'Harry's House' review: Harry Styles is cocky and confident in latest album


By AGENCY

Harry Styles performing onstage during the 63rd Annual Grammy Awards at Los Angeles Convention Center in Los Angeles in 2021. – Tribune News Service

harrys househarrys houseHarry Styles
Harry's House
Sony Music

If the 13 tracks of Harry Styles’ third LP are the walls in which he lives, Harry’s House is a place of self-expression, happiness and healing. From the jubilant, funky Cinema, to the meandering cruiser Keep Driving, Styles shows a breadth of style that matches the album’s emotional range.

Styles set the tone for the album with his single As It Was. The up-tempo track sounds carefree at first listen, but the lyrics reveal a heavier premise. It’s a song that thematically explores the fear and pain associated with accepting that you must let something, or someone, go. It’s a single that teases Styles’ comfort with vulnerability - something that he displays countless times on the record.

Similarly, Grapejuice is deceivingly upbeat with synthesized horns and even a subtle, cheerful whistle at the end of the second verse. The song chronicles a relationship’s end ("There’s never been someone who’s so perfect for me/ But I got over it") and how just as a hangover feels harder with age, it is harder, too, to hide from your emotions the older you get ("I pay for it more than I did back then"). Even when teasing out uncomfortable moments, the musical composition suggests there’s freedom in fully embracing each feeling.

In opener Music For a Sushi Restaurant, Styles’ feelings are more straightforward as he shares his love for another. The track has funk influences, complete with scatting by Styles, a vibrant trumpet and a groovy bass. Lyrically, it mirrors Keep Driving with its stream-of-consciousness style and psychedelic nods ("If the stars were edible/ And our hearts were never full/Could we live with just a taste?"). His joy also feels tangible in Late Night Talking, Cinema and Daydreaming, which features John Mayer on guitar.

In Harry’s House, Styles proves his talent for storytelling – whether it's his own stories of pain or joy or putting himself in the shoes of another.

Perhaps the most heartbreaking track is Matilda - a song that made several of his friends cry on first listen, according to his interview with Zane Lowe. While nodding to the 1988 Roald Dahl novel by the same name, the song centres on a friend he’s only recently realised didn’t receive the love from her family she deserved. The use of guitar harmonics on the stripped-down track bring intimacy to a song that is both cutting and hopeful as he encourages her to move forward without the guilt of leaving behind those who hurt her.

Likewise, Boyfriends finds him empathising with the women in his life who have been underappreciated by men: "They think you’re so easy/ They take you for granted."

Throughout the record, Styles is confident, but not cocky, bringing self-awareness and ease into each song. Harry’s House finds him at his best - free, observant and content. – AP

Article type: metered
User Type: anonymous web
User Status:
Campaign ID: 46
Cxense type: free
User access status: 3
7.5 10

Summary:

Style's latest finds him at his best.

Join our Telegram channel to get our Evening Alerts and breaking news highlights

Harry Styles

   

Next In Entertainment

Amber Heard is supposedly the 3rd most beautiful woman in the world, behind Bella Hadid and Beyonce
Warrior movie 'Mat Kilau' will 'inspire pride and patriotism' in Malaysians
Singaporean actress Xixi Lim calls out netizen who repeatedly fat-shamed her
K-drama star Nam Joo-hyuk accused by second person of school bullying
Stephen Chow hopes HK filmmakers can take advantage of China's huge market
You'll be 'blown away' by 'Stranger Things' season finale, says David Harbour
Singer Dua Lipa sued for second time in a year for posting paparazzi photos of herself
R&B singer R. Kelly sentenced to 30 years in prison in sex case
Actor Chris Hemsworth talks about going butt-naked in new ‘Thor' movie
Blink-182’s Travis Barker rushed to hospital with wife Kourtney Kardashian by his side

Others Also Read