I used to dislike One Direction. I enjoyed their first hit, “What Makes You Beautiful,” but quickly became sick of them. I never gave their music a try, and I never planned to.
Then, I went back on my word. This British boy band became my guilty pleasure and escape from grueling loads of homework. Their music allowed me to be carefree and young. The new direction they have taken with their most recent album, “Midnight Memories,” leads me to believe they have staying power.
Their new music is no longer a reminder of the past but rather a very real wake-up call to the present, which is why everyone ought to give them a listen.
In “Midnight Memories,” released Nov. 25, the band members seem to finally be emerging as individual artists. The lyrics reveal a new depth to their music and this time they wrote the majority of the album, contributing to 11 of 14 songs.
In one of the more wellknown tracks off the album, “Story of My Life,” the band showcases its new, mature sound. It is not just the beat that draws listeners in; the childhood nostalgia and recollecting of memories leave listeners feeling pensive. If you only listen to one song, listen to this one.
The title track, “Midnight Memories,” booms with electric guitars and anthem- like singing reminiscent of Def Leppard’s “Pour Some Sugar on Me.”
Along with drawing from ’80s rock, the band takes inspiration from contemporary artists like Mumford and Sons, whose traces are most obvious in the foot-stomping songs, “Story of My Life” and “Through the Dark,” two of the standout tracks on the album.
Personal preferences aside, these songs are more than just good. They are relatable. The struggle between pursuing what is ahead and holding on to what is behind, the pain and thrill of growing up and the journey of a young adult still trying to figure out life are some of the themes on this album students can relate to.
“Midnight Memories” takes the band’s already-established fame and solidifies it with songs that listeners can relate to and sing along with. The band’s willingness and ability to change with its audience is what will make this album successful and keep the new cardboard cutouts coming.