There are three things that I fear more than anything else in the world:

1)    Growing up

2)    Barney the purple dinosaur

3)    ‘Directioners’ and ‘Beliebers’.

Therefore, in the next few hundred words, I face the wrath of millions of pre-pubescent teens around the world as I hit play to test the One Direction waters.

Now, before I begin and before you bombard me with death threats, dearest Directioners, I have a confession to make: yes, I am jealous that at aged 18 I wasn’t touring the world with my mates, bedding supermodels and needing round the clock security. Yes, ‘What Makes You Beautiful’ was the catchiest pop song to demolish my ear drums since the classic ‘C’est la Vie’. I would now suggest closing this page and doing your homework.

Form an orderly line girls, the banefully handsome, fresh-faced five piece are back from their ridiculously successful cross-Atlantic domination with their quickfire second album Take Me Home and their preppy 80’s claptrap synth pop is undeniably a saluted swing away from the dross bionic R&B of their contemporaries JLS.

The most infuriating The Clash sample unfastens opener ‘Live While We’re Young’; a team-talk, an inspired and informed debate between the likely lads, detailing their pursuit for further sexual conquest, “tonight let’s get some and live while we’re young”. ‘Kiss You’ follows, and the boys have brought their girl home and this is their musically monologued foreplay with the tongue-in-cheek refrain “Baby say yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah and let me kiss you”. Luckily, and I never thought I’d utter these words, Ed Sheeran steps in with some rouge tinted sense, penning their stand out track ‘Little Things’. Lyrically slightly more svelte and pedestrian, smouldered with tunefully blended harmonies and a simple riff which work rather well, some of the lyrics are particularly toe curling and almost insufferable, “you can’t go to bed without a cup of tea/ no you never want to know how much you weigh”.

You’ll notice I am skipping through a number of tracks on this voyage; a lot are just a variation on one other. ‘Last First Kiss’ is untainted glorified pop victory, a grotesquely tear-jerking love story wherein the poster boys offer up their gallingly well toned bodies once again “Wanna be the first to take it all the way like this”.

Queen are the next band to have their glory pulled apart with the ‘We Will Rock You’ intro sampled by yet another boy band on ‘Rock Me’. Mercury has turned in his grave so much he has been put on a Rotisserie.

The fantastically blunt ‘I Would’, penned by one of the McFly-ers, revels in the majesty of TWMYB with beautifully ironic lyricism, depicting the tale of the poor multi-millionaires who “can’t compete with your boyfriend he’s got twenty-seven tattoos”. ‘Over Again’ brings unseen genius, a lyrical Picasso of heartfelt passion, “hole in the middle of my heart like a polo”, as if scribed in the tearsoaked diary of a lovesick child. 

Take Me Home saves the best ’til last, and ‘They Don’t Know About Us’ opens with a slick piano ditty and plays into a Westlife-esque glossy punchy ballad. ‘Summer Love’, a song which the lads actually helped pen and produce showcases sleek harmonies in a bitter-sweet close to an overwrought emotional shitstorm.

Adam Keyworth

Adam is listening to… Ultimate Boy Bands

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5 Comments

  1. November 16, 2012 at 12:13 — Reply

    That half-star seems generous.

  2. Maria
    November 16, 2012 at 12:26 — Reply

    This is unbelievably good.

  3. Ben
    November 16, 2012 at 15:03 — Reply

    This is an immense review. Standing ovation.

  4. Pete
    November 17, 2012 at 09:28 — Reply

    Wouldn’t you just love to run right by them in the picture above, and slap them all with one righteous sweep of your arm.

  5. Katie
    November 19, 2012 at 08:52 — Reply

    ‘Mercury has turned in his grave so much he has been put on a Rotisserie.’ This is as good as music writing gets. Brilliant work

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