I’ve had to make an effort, over the years, to know as little about Harry Styles as possible. Now, I consider it a matter of pride that I know exactly two things about him: he’s the best member of One Direction, and he has four nipples.
But now my knowledge is outdated. Although his nipple count remains the same, Styles branched out at some point, which I was adamantly unaware of, and has just released a solo single. This single is now number one. It’s called Sign of the Times. You’ve probably heard it. If you haven’t, then congratulations.
Now, I am going to do something somewhat avant garde. I’m experimenting. I have decided that, as part of my ongoing resolve to not know anything about the arguable John Lennon of today, I am not going to listen to this song. Instead, I am going to collect the reviews of various friends and associates into this humble column. I’m roundtable-ing it. This is absolutely not because I’m too hungover to form a coherent opinion about anything, but because I’m an artiste, man.
The first feedback I got to this track was from my friend Megan as we edged tantalisingly closer to the speed limit in her ‘96 Ford Fiesta while the song premiered on Capital FM. After a minute and a half of intense concentration, she said to me, in sage tones, ‘This is shit’.
As the song finished, she elaborated. ‘It sounds like every generic pop song ever’, she told me, before turning back to her cassette-playing radio system. ‘I’m let down, Harry. I’m disappointed’.
Then it was Louise, who used to like Justin Bieber, so take her opinions with a grain of salt. She seemed to like the track. After giving me a detailed history of the One Direction’s post-breakup that I absolutely did not ask for, she said that he was ‘the least 1D-sounding of all the ones to do solo stuff so far’. When I asked her if this was good or not, she shrugged. ‘I guess. But it’s alright. Not amazing, but not bad.’
Things are looking up for Harry, then.
Finally, we move onto Wallis, whose Twitter handle used to be ‘wallisloves1d’. ‘My opinion is going to be a very strong one, to be honest’, she says as she loads up the track on Youtube. ‘I used to love them, and now I am a very harsh critic of what they are doing with their lives’.
I received a small essay of feedback from Wallis. It has been condensed below.
‘It could very easily be from One Direction’s first album, but there are parts of it that remind me of the Beatles. I could happily listen to it. It’s not very kid-bop, which is great. My only problem is that it’s so long. When I saw I was only halfway through my heart nearly gave out from boredom. Like, Jesus Christ, Harry. Get to the point’.
Well, there you have it. A think-tank of responses to the biggest musical news of the day. A rainbow of informed and diverse opinions, which is what you will get from me. And as for me, I shall continue on my merry way. We’re all content, aren’t we? Happy Easter.