Written By: Matty Jiles
At Harry Styles’ massive sold-out album release party in LA, Stevie Nicks called Styles “my little muse.” This is only the beginning of the list of achievements Harry Styles has reached since launching a solo career. After a chart-topping debut album, a massive World Tour, and an incredible amount of hype and positive word of mouth, it was made clear that Harry Styles’ was a force to be reckoned with.
Harry’s band was definitely a highlight of his previous release, and they don’t disappoint with this release either. Although the album’s sound is a bit more polished and Top 40 friendly, his pool of extremely talented musicians help maintain a rock sound. Whether it’s the peppy upbeat rhythms in “Golden” (Which reminds me heavily of The Police), the tropical acoustic flare of “To Be So Lonely” or the bluesy slow burn of a track “She” Harry’s band helps take the album in a variety of different directions and moods.
“She” is particularly impressive, with the last half of the song boasts a blaring guitar solo and an extremely satisfying instrumental jam. Harry’s croons over the verses perfectly, before jumping to falsetto in the choruses. This song is definitely a highlight of the album and helps us see the range of styles (pun intended) Harry can work with.
“Falling” may be the moment on the album that best shows off Harry’s power, and is definitely a gut-punch of a song. The track serves as a downfall from the highs presented on previous tracks and tells the story of someone becoming a person they don’t want to be. Harry revealed in an interview with Zane Lowe that the track only took about twenty minutes to write, which makes it even more of a spilling of emotions.
This hodgepodge of sounds does, however, come at the cost of cohesion. “Fine Line” is far from the most consistent album, never really settling in on one sound. What saves the album though, is that most of the songs offer lots on their own, and are still enjoyable. Harry is convincing and genuine with every sonic twist the album presents.
“Fine Line” may not provide a more focused product than Harry’s first album, but it does provide a collection of enjoyable songs with some serious highs. Although this may not help convince people not on board with Harry Styles currently to jump on, it’s a satisfying listen that is sure to have repeat plays from fans.
Favorite Tracks: “Watermelon Sugar”, “She”, “Adore You”