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Opinion: One Direction living, singing proof that a boy band can develop into man band

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Niall Horan (left), Harry Styles, Liam Payne, Zayn Malik, and Louis Tomlinson of One Direction attend the 2014 iHeart Radio Music Festival on Sept. 20 at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas. Credit: Courtesy of MCT

Niall Horan (left), Harry Styles, Liam Payne, Zayn Malik, and Louis Tomlinson of One Direction attend the 2014 iHeart Radio Music Festival on Sept. 20 at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas.
Credit: Courtesy of MCT

Our boys are growing up.

One Direction is set to release its fourth album in less than four years, aptly named “FOUR,” on Nov. 17.

I was surprised when I heard this, considering the band members released their third album, “Midnight Memories,” last November. I think this is a bit too soon, considering they are in the middle of touring the third album. There has been virtually no down time, considering they already planned a 2015 tour, and I can’t help but think that they must want to spend some time off with their friends and families.

But the fans are always waiting with open arms for new music, and One Direction is all about giving the fans what they want.

They’ve already released two singles for the album, “Fireproof” and “Steal My Girl.” “Fireproof” keeps a steady drum beat the whole song, but still feels very relaxed with smooth vocal harmonies. Harmonies is something that, surprisingly, has not been visited a lot in prior albums. If this song is any indication, we can look forward to more of these harmonies in the new album.

“Steal My Girl” starts with a Journey-esque piano intro and begs for a steady clap through the entire song. Despite the late September release date, they’ve described it as having “summer vibes” and it definitely has that laid-back feel. The revisiting of the “na, na, na’s” has me feeling nostalgic because it feels like a subtle nod to their first album, which had more than its fair share of “na’s.”

Both songs address the topic of lasting love. It’s like they spent the first three albums trying to woo the girl, and now, they finally got her.

For many of us fans, unconditional love is what we feel for these boys. If you’ve been a fan since the beginning, like I have, you’ve supported them for almost four years. We have gotten to know them, and we feel like they have gotten to know us, so songs about a love that lasts feel right.

Listening to One Direction’s albums on artist shuffle sounds like four different genres of music. The first album is bubble gum pop, the second infused with more rock and the third giving off more of an indie vibe. Judging by the songs already released, I predict that the fourth album will be the most chill, with a lot of ballads and swelling melodies. And if it’s One Direction, we know there will be songs climbing the charts before too long.

The preppy look, perfectly coiffed hair and squeaky-clean images have been long gone. That is what got them the fans, but it isn’t what made them stick around for this long. Sure, we want to keep them in our bubble gum pop, superficial lyrics folder, but they have broken this mold. Like any artist, they need to evolve in order to keep their career going. The boys and the fans have undoubtedly grown in the past three and a half years, and so should their music.

One Direction has proved that it is possible to grow from boy band to man band.

One comment

  1. is this satire?

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