Published Dec 13, 2019From the beginning, Harry Styles let us know exactly what to expect from his sophomore album, Fine Line. According to him, the album is "all about having sex and feeling sad." If you're on the edge of your seat right now, I'm happy to report that the album arrived exactly as advertised.
With Fine Line, Styles is able to come into his own, more so than with his self-titled debut. He mostly sheds the mask of his heavyweight inspirations, only crawling back into it for a few lacklustre moments on an otherwise enjoyable record.
There is a certain sense of mysticism surrounding the album, perhaps thanks to the entirely fake location of Eroda that Styles created to promote the music video for "Adore You," a fun pop banger about doing anything to win over the person you're infatuated with. It's a fun and endearing tune, though it becomes about ten times as endearing when Styles serenades it to a fish throughout the video.
Lyrically, Fine Line is incredibly honest. He doesn't bother to get overly poetic — and he doesn't need to. On "Cherry," he leads with his vocals in a raw expression of desperately missing an ex lover who seems to have found another. "To Be So Lonely" encapsulates the sense of acceptance you feel after a heart-shattering breakup, even calling out his own flaws and errors.
Album closer "Fine Line" is the perfect way to end his tale of woe and horniness. It's happy and sad, romantic, full of disdain and beautiful all the same.
Fine Line is proof that Harry Styles has grown as an artist since his solo debut. He hasn't reached his full potential, but he's certainly well on his way. (Columbia)