Recommended Tracks: COMING HOME, I’M THE LUCKY ONE, HEARTSONG
Artists You May Like: Wrabel, Surfaces, Bruno Major
Looking for an album to fall in love to right now? Look no further than the newest drop from British duo HONNE. I first found them thanks to their hit single, “Crying Over You,” which was released in 2019 and featured RM and BEKA. This time around with LET’S JUST SAY THE WORLD ENDED A WEEK FROM NOW, WHAT WOULD YOU DO? they’ve created a body of work that cherishes love while it’s here, rather than after it’s gone.
“IDGAF ABOUT PAIN” is a laid-back start to the album, with lyrics that speak of an imbalanced relationship. Even though the situation is sad, the song manages to stay light due to the overlapping and interjected phrases. They accept the pain that comes with being with someone, maybe they even welcome it to a degree. Another sour relationship song, “NOW I’M ALONE” (feat. Sofía Valdés), has such specific lyrics and certain phrases that it feels more intimate than some of the other tracks. It stays aloof by holding back at just the right time, but I think that if the second verse had matched the level of detail in the lyrics of the first it would have been more impactful.
“DANCING ON A CLOUD,” although predictable, is still a good song. It’s comforting, kind of cheesy, but overall it leaves rays of sunshine afterwards. The production on the song is steady and smooth like liquid gold, and I found it lyrically endearing. “COMING HOME” (feat. NIKI) is a song with similar bare production and uncomplicated rhymes. The simplicity of the track blends well with the message that if something feels right, then it doesn’t need to be too complex. It left me feeling like I was on my own road trip to a place I felt safe, loved, and complete: home.
“THREE STRIKES” (feat. Khalid) deals with the feelings of this past year and readjusting to what being social means after COVID. “Stuck in my room, I feel safe on my own/And uncomfortable at the same time,” details that universal experience. There’s trepidation with breaking the paradox prescribed by COVID. Many felt less pressured to engage outside their homes due to quarantine parameters, but to many those walls are an insurmountable fence. For those without ways to engage or utilize other social outlets, depression has become a commonality. For those who didn’t feel compelled to engage much before, anxiety at a potential return to what was once considered social norm is rampant. The song is a cyclical glance into that feeling and the constant disquieting buzz of undirected energy.
“TALK TO ME” is a lyrical plea and a placating call, soothing the fears of a partner. “I’m listening,” is HONNE’s promise to the recipient. I’m listening, so you don’t have to hide how you really feel from me. I’m listening, so you don’t have to hurt me in your self-preservation. I’m listening, waiting for you to trust me and waiting for you to trust yourself. Sonically, the progression of each section mirrors the content: the song starts with alien-like sirens during the dissonance of misunderstanding. Once they make an effort towards their partner, the chorus sweeps in like a melodic breeze. The layers of confusion don’t dissipate completely, but they blend amidst the other layers of lovers trying to reach one another. “BACK ON TOP” (feat. Griff) also starts dramatically and it’s exhilarating. It’s a romantic, jazzy song that has a completely different energy from its predecessor, though. Griff being on the track is the strawberry on top; her smoky vocals on verse two really brought it together. She does a beautiful job of going off at the end, I just wish there was more of that snap throughout the final chorus.
“WHAT WOULD YOU DO?” (feat. Pink Sweat$) is so groovy, I couldn’t stop myself from swaying. The bass guitar was a subtle, yet strong foundation, and the layers above it, especially the vocals, only made it that much better. I wish that Pink Sweat$ had been featured a little more strongly; I feel like they would’ve rocked some more ad-libs.
“EASY ON ME” felt underwhelming to me. Even so, it’s like a balm after a sunburn; though you can still feel the warmth underneath the cool aloe, you know this is going to heal you. The inspiration for the album is made evident with the opening of the following track, “I’M THE LUCKY ONE.” This one is like hop-scotch and sidewalk chalk scribbles: it’s honey-toned and classic. The modern syncopation builds on that, then adds a syrupy melody that coats your whole psyche. What it doesn’t have in vocal range it makes up for in the purposeful utilization of it. It’s another sweet love song; that’s not a bad thing at all.
“HEARTSONG” is a sigh-ful conclusion to the love stories of this album. It carries the romantic indie-inspired wistfulness of many 2010-era alternative hits into this decade. This song epitomizes a key motif I felt touched by from the whole album: masculine love can be gentle. It’s okay for a man to love someone deeply and vulnerably. It’s comforting to see that on display so subtly and so softly. HONNE aren’t asking to be praised for being good guys, and they’re not asking to change the world either. They’ve turned the narrative into a normalized one. It’s normal, acceptable, and inviting for men to love and be allowed to love publicly. Their love doesn’t have be commodified or used as a weapon. It’s just love. This album is just love and it doesn’t have to be any deeper than that.
Different ways to listen or purchase: What Would You Do?
Tickets for multiple dates of their 2022 tour go on sale October 28.