The lustrous palette alone, worthy of a Sven Nykvist film, ensures “April Story” a place in the canon of major K-pop music videos.
The toy shop setting, too, is reminiscent of Fanny and Alexander, Ingmar Bergman’s exhilarating (if ultimately dark) Christmas epic. Production design and photography conspire to give this video a seductive dreamlike appeal, a glistening, jewel-toned invitation to fairytale melancholy.
With new conscripts Rachel (the ballerina) and Chaekyung (with the poodle hair and funky rainbow socks n’ Docs combo), April the band graces this video with their humidly youthful countenances all aglow with dolllike appeal. And Naeun, with her ghostly cameo as the lifesize girl who briefly visits, gives the video its single haunting note of ‘narrative.’
That minimalism might make this video, otherwise obviously outstanding, seem to suffer a bit in comparison with their masterpiece debut video “Dream Candy”. But I’m not going to deduct points: the song’s lyrics provide the obvious story content April want to tell, while the video’s dreamy visuals enrapture us with the escapist beauty of a museum gallery full of refulgent Old Masters–set this time to e.one’s glossy style of idealistic disco yearning. For sheer technical execution and poetic sensibility, “April Story” is the first major artistic contribution in K-pop 2017, and destined for fervent bouts of rewatching!