When January 2020 rolled around, many One Direction (1D) fans were on the edge of their seats as Louis Tomlinson became the last member of the group to release his first solo studio album. Tomlinson has brought the British indie-pop sound back with a new refreshing spin. “Walls” features 12 empowering tracks that are sure to give you all the feels. It took 4 long years for Tomlinson to break out of the boy band stigma and find his sound, and it was SO worth the wait.
Now, for a break down of the first five tracks:
The album starts off strong with Tomlinson’s unreal single, “Kill My Mind.” This title is an upbeat, indie rock ballad that makes you want to lose yourself, jump off a cliff into the water and go on an adventure. The song is carefree and spontaneous, which makes for a wonderful first track.
“Don’t Let It Break Your Heart” is up next. This song, as you may have guessed, is a breakup song. The lyrics tell the story of someone feeling like all hope is gone, but he or she will prevail. Even though this person contributed so much to this relationship, he or she shouldn’t focus on the past and let it tear him or her apart. Tomlinson’s spin on a typical breakup song feels uplifting while other breakup tunes make you feel torn.
The third track titled “Two of Us” is possibly the most gut-wrenching of all. “Two of Us” is special to Tomlinson and his fan base because it is about his late mom, Johannah Deakin. In late 2016, Tomlinson’s mom died of cancer. This was a shock to the 1D fandom and to Tomlinson Because his mother was his best friend. “Two of Us” is a total tear-jerker. When listening to the song, you can sense how difficult it must have been for Tomlinson to create.
The fourth track, “We Made It,” always brings a smile to my face and makes me want to triumph in every aspect of my life. This entire album can change your mood on a dime. You can go from confident, to sad, to happy and then all 3 at once. “We Made It” is one of the happier tunes. Many fans of Tomlinson see this song as a romantic one, but I personally see it as a battle cry. “We Made It” is a memoir of Louis and all of his successes in life. Listen to this one when you’re in a rut or feeling down because you’ll feel a change.
“Too Young” is for the naive and reckless. “We were too young to know we had everything,” he sings. This song gives the audience a better appreciation for the opportunities that they are given in life as well as an appreciation for those who are side by side with them on the journey. It also reminds me of being young and how easily we can be taken advantage of and manipulated into things when we are the most vulnerable. The song teaches such a powerful lesson that you wouldn’t usually find in an indie-pop song, but that’s what makes “Walls” so different and compelling.
Finally, we have gotten to the album title track, “Walls.” Lucky number six. In an interview with Build Series, Tomlinson said he picked this song to be the title track because it was one of the first he wrote and he claimed that “it just fit.” This song is the definition of a metaphor. “But these high walls, they came up short. Now I stand taller than them all” is undoubtedly the most powerful lyric. I believe “Walls” is an ode to Tomlinson’s self-confidence. He has truly blossomed into a confident, trailblazing artist who can stand on his own when the going gets tough.
Click here for part 2!