2019 – Pop / Rock
Fine Line is just a set of sets of songs.
Lately, Harry Styles nad become more than a singer and songwriter, but also, a style’s influencer. After the breakup of One Direction, Harry’s first album introduced the classic old-school rock to the pop culture. While the other former members bet on generic pop music, Style created his own style. The visual and sonority of his first LP was very divergent from 1D aesthetic, since the visual up to the lyrics. Now, his sophomore album, which has a look that makes us believe it is a next innovation for Harry, in fact, is just the continuation of his first project, with a more forced look that make us wonder if Harry is being honest or fearless to arouse intrigue.
Fine Line, the second studio album by the British singer and songwriter, Harry Style, is, in some way, disappointing. Sure, Styles didn’t promise anything, however, when he introduced all this new look, everyone’s expectations went to the clouds, and now, after the release, all the expectations fell to the ground. In the reality, Fine Line isn’t a big deal, in fact, it’s just a normal album filled with normal and unmarkable songs. Of course, some songs on this LP are great, but others are just are not timeless. Also, Harry’s second album was supposed to tell a sad story with an overcoming in the end, but thanks to the poor organization of the tracks, this fable was damaged.
The first track, “Golden”, has a start with a potential, but after the beats that count, Styles take us to his first album. The backing vocals of the beginning and chorus, and how they are played, is a very used element of Harry’s first LP. Also, “Golden” is really weak track, mainly for the beginning of a project, because I didn’t feel any invitation like “come listen to this amazing album”. At least the stereo-game on the repetitive bridge is something that should be mentioned. While the first track created Harry’s fearless persona, “Watermelon Sugar” produces a high sexual and sweet juice that has a great progression over almost 3 minutes. Even though I didn’t like it so much, it’s a song that sticks a little bit. Harry’s desperate desire to conquer his beloved emerges in “Adore You”. Composed by a dated backing vocals and electric guitar solo that bring a charm to the music, the third track is the one of the best despite the lyric that is not a big deal.
“Lights Up”, the lead single of Fine Line, sounds melancholy but preach freedom. Everything on this track work almost perfectly. Since the guitars, vocals and purposeful autotunes, the songs managed to keep everything in a really cool conversation. Even these tracks aren’t that bad, each one shoots in one direction with superficially. Only after “Cherry”, the fifth track, that we can see a chronology, that is not so well developed too. “Cherry” is the beginning of the tragedy: an open letter to his ex-girlfriend where Styles uses a less forced voice and chooses more natural sound. The French in this track brought a charm even though the way it was practiced looked like birds. “Falling” it’s a well written poem about how your life going to be after a breakup. The vocal delivery of Harry on this track is great: the way how he shares his emotions through his voice is touching. The next stage of Harry’s Sad Journey is “To Be So Lonely”, that represents the moments when you get drunk and call your ex. It’s not a bad song either, but the pre-chorus sounded really out of harmony and the chorus really weak.
The 6-minutes long track, “She”, is the best on this LP. On this track, Styles embodies a stripped rock singer who plays on a seaside beach. The atmosphere created on this song is really dense, not only because of the drums, electric guitars and backing vocals that perform convergingly with Harry, but also because of the lyrics that is great because created an idealized relationship with details. Breaking the rock vibe of “She”, “Sunflower, Vol. 6” is really somber, not only because talks about the good moments with his ex with superficiality, but also because the instruments are really boring and out of the curve. Like “Sunflower, Vol. 6”, “Canymon Moon” follow the “Good-Vibes” and bets in claps, whistles and outdoor conversation groups to talk about how beautiful the world is.
Even though it was taken from Shrek’s movie, “Treat People With Kindness” mixes the chorus composed by a choir and the great vocal performance of Harry, but this fact doesn’t make the music not warm. To finish the album, “Fine Line” sums up the roller coaster that Harry went through lately. It’s a really beautiful song composed by guitars, electric guitars and pianos. Like in “Falling”, the Harry’s vocal delivery is incredible. How the emotion reaches our ears with all the feelings that Styles felt, it’s amazing. At the very end, the cymbals play violently representing the density of feelings.
Even with all the issues, Fine Line is ok, also is the best thing former One Direction members can deliver. Even not being that cohesive, Harry Styles managed well to put the rock of “She”, the acoustic of “Falling” and the pop of “Watermelon Sugar” together without creating a huge discrepancy. Like all the albums, Harry’s Fine Line has great and bad moments, unfortunately, the good ones are not so good, and the bad ones are prominent. At the end of all, Fine Line is a set of sets of songs.