Ellie Pickles

April Keen, Coffee House Sessions 13/02/17

What a breath of fresh air, and the perfect way to end a gloomy Monday afternoon in February. Often when we hear about a singer-songwriter, we picture an artist onstage alone with their acoustic guitar, singing songs that often sound remarkably similar to other musicians. Not April Keen. As she set up her nord 3 synth (the music geek inside me went wild) and an electric guitar was brought on stage, the murmuring conversations in the Courtyard all turned their attentions to her.

April is a 19 year old musician from Blackpool, who is now based in London and describes her sound as a mixture of modern folk and alternative-pop. Her Facebook page (link below) is filled with covers and rehearsal clips showcasing her angelic voice, which she often accompanies with soothing chords and melodies played on acoustic guitar or synth. Her sound is hugely influenced by artists such as Daughter and Aurora while she takes inspiration for her lyrics and melodies from Gabrielle Aplin.

When April started singing, the usual bustle of the courtyard was silenced and as her voice resonated throughout the room, everyone seemed to relax. Many songs included calming interludes on electric guitar (played by Jesse, whom she met at University) or moments of reflection, which were highlighted by slowing chord patterns on her synth. In a brief interview with April I discovered that the majority of her set list was comprised of new songs, most of which she has recently been in the studio recording. She started writing aged just 15 and soon after realised music was something she wanted to pursue. Her songs are honest, truthful but remain non-intrusive; perfect for relaxing Sunday mornings or background music for your revision.

April is currently half way through her Coffee House Sessions tour, which exposes emerging artists to music fans via performances in student union coffee shops and bars up and down the country. Though April is nearing the end of her 20 gig tour, the performance was spotless and her voice controlled. Mondays will never be the best day of the week, but listening to April Keen really did make it just that little bit better.

If you’re interested in finding more about April, her music and discovering the latest Coffee House Sessions check out the links below.




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