Recommended Tracks: Adore You, She, Canyon Moon
Artists You May Like: James Bay, George Ezra, AJ Mitchell
Pull on your high-waisted bell bottoms and button up your bright-colored blazers because it is time to end the year in styles – Harry Styles. The stylish pop rocker invites us into his private world on his sophomore album, Fine Line. Part easy listening, part break-your-heart, Fine Line tests that boundary between feeling good and feeling like everything is falling apart.
I see the album as being divided into three sections, starting with the “A” section. The songs in this section are your go-to jams; electric, moody, and timeless, it is clear why anyone would gravitate towards these tracks and why three out of four of them were already released as singles. The fourth track in this section that had not been released is the opening track, “Golden.” Filled with easy-going vibes and a beat that establishes it as “cool without trying too hard,” you could not pick a better track to kick off this album.
Next, we go into the “B” section, where things slow down a notch. It begins with “Cherry,” a track about one of Harry’s exes. For those who have listened to Harry’s previous album, you could say that this is the “Sweet Creature” of this album. It is stripped back and pure, instilling a calmness and a sense of ease. After hearing the next two tracks, “Falling” and “To Be So Lonely,” it is evident that Harry is going through a time where he is finding out who he is and figuring out what is important in his life. Out of the three sections on the album, this is the more reflective and trivial.
We finish up the album with another “A” section, going back to our convivial roots. There is an open, good-natured vibe in this section, from the tropical “Canyon Moon” to the celebratory “Treat People With Kindness.” Before we know it, we come to the final track, “Fine Line.” The track is distant and delicate, as there is minimal accompaniment to Harry’s light vocals. Just when we feel as if the rain is going to start falling from the gray skies overhead, the clouds break up and we are greeted with sunshine – trumpets and drums are added and help bring the track to a joyful close.
It is difficult to compare this album to Harry’s debut album and choose which one is “better.” Both are great in their own way, but Harry’s personality has come through more on Fine Line. We sense a more playful Harry, but also a more introspective Harry. In any case, this continues to tell the tale of our well-dressed protagonist, making it a great follow-up album.
You can stream Fine Line on platforms like Spotify and Apple Music.
Catch Harry on tour next year here.