12 Anime Like Your Lie in April

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Anime Like Your Lie in April: a crying Kaori is holding a melodica.
Credit: A-1 Pictures

Your Lie in April boasts of one of the biggest following in anime history. Fans have different reasons for loving the series, ranging from its soothing themes of music and romance to its tear-jerking story. If you're looking for something similar to watch, here are 12 anime like Your Lie in April to add to your must-watch list.

  1. Kono Oto Tomare!: Sounds of Life

    Chika Kudo, a misunderstood high school delinquent, joins Takezo Kurata, president and lone member of their school's koto club, and subsequently saves it from being dissolved. They are soon joined by three of Chika's friends, a secretive female senior, and a reticent koto prodigy. Though the group couldn't get any more mismatched at first, their differences are ultimately swept aside—eventually making room for romance between some of the members.

    Viewers are treated to the strengthening of the club members' bond as they get through hurdles together, all while going through heartwarming reconciliations of each of their backstories, all of which are painfully realistic.

    Kono Oto Tomare!: Sounds of Life is not only similar to Your Lie in April because it is a music anime, but also and more so because it puts a lot of weight on how much friendships help in getting someone out of their shell and accepting their true potential. Each character in the anime has a difficulty that their friends help them overcome.

    While Kono Oto Tomare!: Sounds of Life does have a couple of sad moments, its funny and musical scenes balance them out. These scenes make the anime a much lighter watch than Your Lie in April so I think it would work great as a follow-up.

    You won't get much if you're looking for a happy ending as there hasn't been any word for a second season to follow the 2019 split-cour release. but the manga is ongoing, if you want more of Tokise High's koto club.

    Related: 6 Best Sites to Read Manga Legally Online

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  2. Kids on the Slope

    Kaoru Nishimi, a socially withdrawn classical pianist, has long accepted his friendless fate after having moved from one school to another all his life. When he meets jazz music-loving delinquent Sentarou Kawabuchi, he inadvertently makes his first friend. Kaoru soon meets Ristuko Mukae, a fellow student whose family owns a record shop, and the three start to foster a friendship that Kaoru never would've imagined he'd ever have.

    Much like Kono Oto Tomare!: Sounds of Life, Kids on the Slope is quite similar to Your Lie in April in that it's the characters' love for music that enables them to bond and break free of the sadness that has kept them in the shadows.

    Kids on the Slope's romantic elements are a bit more apparent than that of the previous item in this list (read: more rewarding), so if you liked Your Lie in April for its musical romance characteristic, then this might be the best series to watch next!

  3. Anohana: The Flower We Saw That Day

    Jinta Yadomi was a member of the Super Peace Busters, a band of six kids whose task was to protect the peace. After the sudden death of one of their members, Menma, the five remaining members drifted apart.

    Presently, Jinta is a high school shut-in who plays video games all day at home. When Menma suddenly appears in front of him, he ignores her, thinking the heat might be causing him to hallucinate. It doesn't take long for Jinta to realize she is actually there, or at least her spirit is. Now, in order to grant Menma's last wish and have her soul rest in peace, the five other members must face each other and come to terms with the guilt they each are feeling.

    Anohana and Your Lie in April are almost always on the same list of heartbreaking anime recommendations, and that's no wonder, given that the story of these two is sure to get the waterworks going.

    In the same way that Your Lie in April gets even the strongest of anime watchers crying for days, Anohana keeps the chest heavy with feelings of could-have-beens, if only the main characters didn't die. If you're in for an extension of your cry-athon, definitely make this original anime series your next watch.

    Related: 12 Original Anime Series Worth Watching

  4. Orange

    When Naho Takamiya receives a letter from someone claiming to be her future self, she initially ignores it, especially since it's her first day of sophomore year and she's running late. However, when things described in the letter from the future actually happen, Naho begins to take it seriously. According to the letter, a friend, transfer student Kakeru Naruse, is no longer with them in the future.

    Orange chronicles how Naho and her friends work together to keep Kakeru alive, even at the expense of the future they could've had otherwise.

    Depression is a serious matter, and while it definitely is a lot more common than one would think, it's not the easiest to portray. Many anime fans have rated the anime poorly, pointing to the "lack of depth" in the characters and even criticizing the way Kakeru's depression was depicted. But the thing about mental illnesses is that there's never a correct way to show them since it's rarely the same for those who have them.

    As in the other anime we previously discussed, Orange is a story that highlights the power of friendship to break self-isolation habits, especially when they're proving dangerous to someone. Though a hit-or-miss, there's no denying the fact that Orange has an important message to deliver that has to do with coping, self-love, and relationships.

    If you're looking for a friendship-romance slice of life anime with only a hint of death as opposed to Your Lie in April's in-your-face approach, you should give Orange a watch.

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  5. March Comes in Like a Lion

    Rei Kiriyama is a professional shogi player, who, at age 17, is already considered a genius at the sport. Having been orphaned at a very young age, he lived with an adoptive family that subjected him to intense pressure, unnecessarily adding to his already melancholic state of mind.

    When he moves to Tokyo to start living independently, Rei meets a trio of sisters who are dead set on changing his gloomy outlook on life. Thus begins his opening up to a happier existence with friends that are the closest things he has ever had to a family.

    March Comes in Like a Lion is a poignant anime about a genius who's hampered by the not-so-good qualities of life. Here is a young man who's supposedly equipped with what society deems to be the tools needed to succeed in life, and yet he has a crippling loneliness that he has decidedly learned to live with.

    Rei's disposition is a bit reminiscent of that of Your Lie in April's main character, Kousei Arima, in that they are both so good at what they do but couldn't find it in themselves to truly enjoy it due to trauma. And just like Kaori Miyazono does in Kousei's life, the Kawamoto sisters play a huge role in breaking the chains that keep Rei from looking forward to a happy life.

    March Comes in Like a Lion is the best series to watch next if you're looking for the satisfying opening up of the main character to the brighter side of life.

  6. I Want To Eat Your Pancreas

    Haruki Shiga doesn't really have anything going for him. That's not to say he has no talents or brains, whatsoever, just that he doesn't really find living to be worth his while and just aimlessly exists everyday. The only consolation he has in his dull way of living is reading.

    When Haruki stumbles upon a handwritten book at a hospital waiting room, he later discovers that it's actually a diary that belongs to Sakura Yamauchi, a classmate that couldn't be any more different from him. Apparently, the extremely upbeat and popular Sakura is suffering from a pancreatic illness, and she has little time left in the world.

    Now bound by this fact that not even Sakura's friends know, the two begin to spend time lots of time together as Haruki reluctantly jumps in to help Sakura check off items on her list of things to do before she leaves Earth. Sadly ironic, it's Sakura's cheery disposition despite having her days numbered that slowly fills Haruki with a more involved attitude to life.

    The movie pretty much spoils the story for its viewers within its first few seconds, but it doesn't take away from the experience at all. In fact, even though viewers are essentially forced to accept what's to come, as they are told the story, they begin to be increasingly in denial of its inevitable ending.

    I Want to Eat Your Pancreas is almost the same story that Your Lie in April is, told in a single film. With the main characters' similarities, it can be argued that the only difference between the two is the movie's lack of musical elements. I don't think that's such a bad thing though, because both anime were done so well, I doubt anybody would mind watching them back-to-back.

    This movie is the next best choice if you're looking for the dynamics that Kousei and Kaori have, and the pain that'll keep you up for a while.

  7. Sound! Euphonium

    Following an unfavorable incident involving her middle school brass band, Kumiko Oumae has vowed to enter high school fresh and actively steers clear of anything that could cause a repeat of it. Fate has other plans, however, and she ends up getting dragged into the school's brass band once more.

    With the way the band is at the moment, it will be quite a challenge to get everything and everyone together, and a rerun of Kumiko's middle school trauma is definitely just waiting to happen. Luckily, Noboru Taki, the band's new advisor, has plans to get the kids in shape for the nationals. Kumiko and her friends must now overcome differences and flawed friendships if they want a shot at success.

    Sound! Euphonium is probably the first anime in this list to deviate from the common theme of taking people out of their shells, but it's still relatively comparable to Your Lie in April because of Kumiko, who drops something she loves doing because of emotional wounds that are yet to heal. It's the connection she builds with the rest of the band that ultimately makes them a force in the world of brass band competitions.

    Sound! Euphonium is definitely an easier watch and is not too far off if it's the prematurely retired musician trope that got you hooked to Your Lie in April.

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  8. Given

    Ritsuka Uenoyama is a disinterested musician who plays the guitar in a band. When he and the reserved Mafuyu Satou have an unplanned meeting one day, Uenoyama scolds the latter for taking poor care of the guitar he seems to like carrying around. Mafuyu decides to ask Uenoyama to fix the guitar and teach him to play it as well.

    When Uenoyama hears Mafuyu sing, his interest for music is rekindled and he becomes determined to make Mafuyu their lead singer. The problem is that Mafuyu is dealing with the unresolved agony following the death of his ex-boyfriend, Yuki Yoshida, making him unable to give what the band requires of him.

    With the help of his new friends and a romantic connection with Uenoyama that he tries to brush off at first, Mafuyu comes to terms with his trauma and ultimately embraces his talents.

    Given is a BL anime that explores the shedding off of guilt and past experiences that make someone unable to overcome feelings of unworthiness to live in the present. Just like Kousei, Mafuyu has immense musical talent that he is unwilling to show others. The only difference would probably be that Kousei is physically unable to, while Mafuyu deliberately does because of his guilt.

    Fans of Your Lie in April would easily spot the parallels between Kousei and Mafuyu. If you happen to be a BL fan who enjoyed Your Lie in April, Given is the best choice to stream next!

    Related: The Top 10 LGBTQ+ Anime of All Time

  9. Nodame Cantabile

    Shinichi Chiaki is what you would call an elite musician. Given his distinguished familial background, he is a narcissistic perfectionist who is quite unforgiving when it comes to the standards he holds himself and others to.

    When he meets the eccentric Megumi Noda who goes by the name Nodame, Shinichi finds it difficult to grasp her seemingly undisciplined approach towards music. Seeing as Nodame's ethics are the bane to his own practices, Shinichi is horrified to find out that she is his neighbor... and she's utterly in love with him.

    Of course, Nodame wouldn't be in the same school as Shinichi is without some sort of talent, and when he hears her playing, he quickly understands why they'd be roughly on the same level musically.

    This romcom anime might not have much in common with Your Lie in April apart from the fact its main characters are also exceedingly gifted musicians. But Nodame Cantabile rightfully earned a spot in the list because viewers who've watched and moved on (or at least made an attempt to) from the crying mess that Your Lie in April is, deserve a more or less similar couple dynamic that won't leave them trying to patch up a broken heart.

    Definitely watch this series next if you're in for some light-hearted and funny music anime!

  10. Blue Spring Ride

    Futaba Yoshioka didn't have the best middle school life. Apart from being excluded by jealous girls because she was most boys' type, her crush left town before they could go on a promised festival date and start anything remotely romantic.

    Now in high school, Futaba makes an active effort to look and act less "girly" so she doesn't get ostracized like before. She's in for the surprise of her life when she realizes her middle school crush, Kou Tanaka, who now uses the last name Mabuchi, is back in town. But Kou's last name isn't all that's changed—he is now gloomy, snobby, and just an all-around negative person.

    Soon, Futaba learns of the things that happened in Kou's life while he was gone, which caused the change in his personality. Somehow, Futaba believes the Kou she fell in love with is still there, and she's determined to make him come out no matter what.

    At first glance, Blue Spring Ride seems to be the least likely to be in this list: it's not a music anime (although "Sekai wa Koi ni Ochiteiru" is one of the best anime opening songs ever), nobody dies, and all things considered, it's a generally feel-good series.

    But Blue Spring Ride and Your Lie in April are more similar than you would think. Kou and Kousei are some of the most socially withdrawn high schoolers you'll ever meet, and they are both pulled by the bubbly Futaba and Kaori, respectively, out of their trauma-induced dispirited predicaments.

    Blue Spring Ride is an excellent sequent if it's the romance that had your utmost attention in Your Lie in April.

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  11. Beck: Mongolian Chop Squad

    Yukio "Koyuki" Tanaka is a shy high schooler who is only slightly bothered by his directionless daily existence. One day, he saves a strange dog from being bullied by a couple of kids, and subsequently meets its owner, Ryuusuke "Ray" Minami. Koyuki later learns that Ray is a gifted guitar player, and the revelation sparks an interest in him.

    Koyuki discovers the joys of playing rock music and the culture that comes with it, slowly laying out a path that he could take towards a future he didn't expect he'd have. In the process, Koyuki develops a crush for Ray's younger sister, Maho. With her help and the rest of the band's, the hazy path might just become sturdy enough for Koyuki to go on.

    Beck: Mongolian Chop Squad is yet another series that looks like it's only found its way to this list because it's a music anime. While that may be true to some extent, the real similarity between this and Your Lie in April lies in the introverted natures of both anime's main characters, and their common love for music.

    Beck ends on a much happier note than Your Lie in April does, so this will be the ideal series to binge next if you like characters like Kousei and Koyuki but can't deal with any more gut punching.

  12. Erased

    Satoru Fujinuma has a strange ability: whenever something bad is about to happen, he is involuntarily transported to several minutes before it does. Having had this power for a while, he has learned to be quick to find what could be so wrong it'll cause an accident. He has saved many lives this way.

    Satoru has become accepting of this ability and doesn't give it much thought any longer, until one day he finds someone close to him dead. If that's not enough, he gets framed for it.

    With things happening so quickly and his mind being in a terrible frenzy, Satoru attempts to flee the scene as police try and get him. He then finds himself sent back to 18 years before and quickly realizes he must fix whatever needs fixing as a grade schooler so his relatively peaceful life in the present is kept safe.

    Like Blue Spring Ride, Erased's similarity to Your Lie in April isn't very noticeable at first. But the evident themes of death and friendship saving lives are what make Erased a great follow-up to the anime in question, although their approach to the topics are quite different.

    Related: Six Mystery Anime on Netflix to Test Your Brain

And that's the end of our list of twelve anime we think you'll enjoy if you loved Your Lie in April.

If you would rather go for shows that will ease your sore heart, you might want to check out our list of the best pure romance anime instead!