After a near 2 year hiatus, April came roaring back with the fantastic Kara-esque Lalalilala. That song has gone onto become one of my favourites of the year and this raised expectations for followup Now or Never. And while it may not be another Lalalilala, it’s an upbeat summer time smash perfect for the season.
Honestly I’m kind of glad that I didn’t review this track right away. It’s one of those tracks that didn’t really leave much of an impression on first impression but has only gotten more addictive with time. Much of that is due to the frantic chorus which felt unnecessarily busy on my first listen. It still does feel a bit too cluttered for its own good but multiple listens have helped me further appreciate the gorgeous layers of melody buried under the bursting instrumental. A greater focus on melody during the hook would have easily sent Now or Never into the list of my favourite songs of the year but I’ll take what I can get.
But while the chorus took some time to warm up to, Now or Never‘s connective tissue felt like K-pop summer at its best. The guitar and synth driven opening verse is summertime fun at its most enjoyable with cheerful vocals and and equally buoyant melody. The girls sound great as always and the bridge especially helps shine light on the groups very underrated vocal line. Had the chorus maintained this kind of breezy, upbeat vibe then we really could have had something great here. That’s not going to stop me from replaying this over and over though!
Final Rating: 8.25 / 10