Ah, One Direction. Two years after their X Factor debut and despite not winning, for some reason they’re one of the acts which has stuck around - probably because of the appeal of Harry Styles’ hair, to be honest.
Track numero uno, ‘Live While We’re Young’, isn't terrible, although that’s possibly something to do with the opening riff that the band have previously admitted they ripped off The Clash. And sadly, that seems to be something of a theme on Take Me Home – as though boybands don’t have to stave off enough accusations of being unoriginal, particularly ones that were manufactured on The X Factor, there’s also a beat on ‘Rock Me’ which is suspiciously similar to... wait for it... ‘We Will Rock You’.
They’re probably supposed to be a homage, but inviting comparisons to bands such as The Clash and Queen is really a bad idea because, let’s face it, One Direction aren't going to be the ones coming off best in that competition.
Also worth a mention - the two songs written by Ed Sheeran. ‘Little Things’, the latest single, is nothing short of cringe-worthy - do girls really need to know that boys love the ‘dimples at the bottom of their spine’ or whatever? Surely ‘I love you even though this, this and this is wrong with you’ isn't exactly a very nice message to give, especially considering previous hit ‘What Makes You Beautiful’ which basically says, hey, your lack of confidence is totally hot! The other Ed Sheeran penned track is ‘Over Again’, and sounds like a cut track from his latest album - it’s an odd choice for One Direction to use, as Sheeran's style does them no favours.
It’s interesting to note that One Direction promised a ‘heavier’ sound on the new album - although we're not sure what could've been expected, it’s certainly not this. If anything, Take Me Home has even more of a boyband-lite sound than Up All Night did, and is a lot less catchy. Plus there's a lot more embarrassing moments; let’s ignore Niall Horan’s high-pitched ‘owww!’s on ‘Heart Attack’ and, for that matter, every single one of Louis Tomlinson’s solo moments.
Take Me Home is fun and catchy enough that their teenage fans are sure to like it, with a few heart-melting ballads thrown in for good measure, but there’s nothing to appeal to anyone older - no great pop epics to storm the charts. Boybands aren't always a bad thing, but Take Me Home definitely doesn't bring anything new to the table. All in all? Best avoided, this one.