I thought nothing could ever compare to One Direction and hearing Niall Horan sing along with four other guys, but I was wrong. Horan released his second solo album, “Heartbreak Weather,” on March 13, 2020, and after listening to it, my celebrity crush on him has grown. I didn’t think that was possible considering I have a life-size poster of him. The album as a whole is spectacular, but six of the 14 songs caught my attention and instantly became my favorites.
The album title song, “Heartbreak Weather,” has an ‘80s vibe to it that makes it a fun song to dance to with friends or even by yourself in front of the mirror. The beat is steady and groovy, and there is some nice instrumentation going on throughout the song. I could definitely imagine this song being a part of a movie soundtrack.
The second song on the album, “Black and White,” caught my attention right away because of the two different guitar styles featured. Horan used a different kind of vocal style for this song, but there is also a familiarity about this song. I picked up some One Direction vibes while listening to it and it got me really excited. The lyrics are sweet and romantic. They gave me all the feelings. Horan not only showed off his songwriting skills for this song but also his vocal range.
“Nice to Meet Ya” was the first single released from the album and it’s probably my favorite song on the album. There is a piano incorporated into the instrumentation and pianos just make everything better. The guitar part throughout the song also really adds to it and makes this song a jam. The vocals are on point and Horan even speaks a little French, which makes me love him and this song even more. I love singing along to this song and get hyped every time I listen to it. For some reason, this song sounds like it should be the theme song for a James Bond movie and I fully support that.
“Put a Little Love on Me” is the complete opposite of “Nice to Meet Ya,” and it shows a completely different style of music that Horan is capable of doing. It starts with Horan playing the piano. So now, we know that he not only sings and plays the guitar, but he can also tickle the ivories. The vocals are soft and beautiful and so are the lyrics. This song is a vulnerable ballad and it reminds me of songs featured on Horan’s first album, “Flicker.”
Horan has collaborated with country star Maren Morris in the past and the song titled “San Francisco” gives me some country vibes. Pop country has grown over the past few years and this song could fit into that category if it wanted to. If Horan didn’t sing this song, I could see Dan + Shay singing it. However, I’m glad Horan sings this song because it shows off his voice. There is some cool digital instrumentation going on, but there is also a guitar part featured that gives the song that country vibe.
The last song on the album, “Still,” blew me away. The lyrics are sweet and romantic, but they are also really vulnerable. This is one of the most beautiful songs that has ever blessed my ears. I would describe this song as a folksy ballad. The combination of guitar and violin works really well, and there is even some whistling that was a cool touch. Horan sings some falsetto vocals that gave me chills. This song took me on an emotional journey. It made me want to cry.
“Heartbreak Weather” has a wonderful combination of different musical styles and I think everyone can find a song that they enjoy listening to. Horan was able to show off not only his vocals on this album but also his instrumental talents and songwriting skills. To say that I am proud of Horan and how far he has come in his solo career since One Direction is an understatement.
Rating: 5 stars