Single Review: Harry Styles channels Bowie in ‘Sign of the Times’

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Harry Styles has finally released his debut single “Sign of the Times.” It’s the song that we’ve all been wanting to hear. Rumors have been flowing since the split of One Direction and everyone has been wanting to hear what the “Justin Timberlake” of 1D  could produce and boy, he really produced a single.

“Sign of the Times” isn’t like anything Harry has done before. While 1D during their last couple albums played with the pop rock, but his first single is a little bit more rock. It’s being compared to sounding like the late great David Bowie and they aren’t wrong. Musically, the song is pretty epic. It starts off with a piano and then get’s more epic as you go on. It also has this very “old school” feel to it that I really like. It will also make the song appeal to more than just his existing fan base.

Vocally, Harry’s vocals are the best I’ve ever heard from him. He’s not overpowering them but he’s not holding back. The way he’s singing just flows so well with the instrumental behind him. It’s just something we really don’t hear these days from mainstream radio artist. It’s rather refreshing. His voice just sounds so epic as well. The song is just so damn epic.

The lyrics make it sound like the song would be played at a funeral. Yes, a funeral. It’s kind of song that one would play when you need to move on and you decided to be overdramatic and throw a funeral. But the song is a rather sad. It just adds to the epicness because they take you through the emotions and tells a story. The lyrics are beautiful and are written so well.

The only complaint that I have with it, and it’s a minor complaint, is that it feels too much like a One Direction song that didn’t make the cut. While it’s a different style, it still sounds like something that would One Direction had on one of their last albums. Starting from “Midnight Memoirs,” One Direction started to play with a Pop Rock song. They always had a little bit of a rock-ish edge but it wasn’t like “Best Night Ever,” “Steal My Girl,” and even “Drag Me Down.” Ultimately, it won’t totally hurt him but he’s going to get compared to the most successful solo artist out of 1D – ZAYN. I won’t be doing that because I have a column for that were I compare.

Overall, The song is pretty much an epic way to start a solo career. The music, the vocals, and the lyrics are just amazing. You forget that you are listening to a song for six minutes. Yeah, the song is that long. Doesn’t feel like it right? I just wish it wasn’t a little bit less like One Direction’s sound.

Here’s the single for your ears to enjoy:

Rating: 4.5 out of 5

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