The New Style is Solo

Styles' "Fine Line" to solo success

Charlotte Reynolds, News Editor

After ending his 2017 tour, singer-songwriter and former One Direction member, Harry Styles took a career break to write and record more music. Styles’ first single, “Lights Up” was released October 11, 2019, followed by two more singles anticipating his second solo album, “Watermelon Sugar” and “Adore You”. Fine Line, released December 13, 2019, features a twelve-song tracklist described as rock-pop with elements of psychedelic pop, folk, soul, funk, and indie-pop. Earning immense success, Fine Line debuted number three on the UK Albums Chart and number one on the Billboard 200. Styles began his performance journey when he auditioned for the British X-Factor at just 16 years old. Judge and television personality, Simon Cowell created One Direction by pairing Styles with four other boys; Louis Tomlinson, Liam Payne, Niall Horan and Zayn Malik. The five went on to produce five studio albums as their fame rapidly grew all over the world. It was hard not to love the group of British heartthrobs. The unique lyrical and musical style of Fine Line is far enough removed from that of One Direction, a pop boy band that very religiously followed the popular musical mold. By dipping his toes in the water with influences such as ‘70s power pop, Foster the People funk, and Coldplay soul, Styles is exemplifying his talent and individuality in the music scene. Perhaps the most anticipated track after Styles’ interview with Zane Lowe, “Cherry”, reveals the breakup between Styles and French model, Camille Rowe. The guitar-led ballad ends with a voice message from Rowe spoken in the key of the song, “Coucou! Tu dors? Oh, j’suis désolée…Bah non…Nan, c’est pas important…Ouais, on a été à la plage, et maintenant on. Parfait!” This snippet translates to, “Hey! Are you asleep? Oh, I’m sorry…Well, no… Nope, it’s not important…Yup, we went to the beach, and now we— Perfect! Let’s go!”. Continuing the theme of sentimental heartbreak tunes, “Falling” contrasts to tracks on the album such as “Golden”, “Watermelon Sugar”, and “Sunflower Vol. 6”. Styles digs up agony and distress while essentially “falling” after previous songs with high energy and positive motives. “She”, a 6-minute song heavily centered around electric guitar and Pink Floyd influence very closely resembles his previous song “Woman”. Fine Line is just the beginning of Styles’ solo career and a beautiful composition of his creative mind and niche for style.