One Direction’s new album has me singing until the A.M.

labeled for reuse under creative commons license

labeled for reuse under creative commons license

Never again will I cringe as One Direction comes on the radio or try to hide the flush in my cheeks when “End of the Day” or “Perfect” shuffles itself to the top of my playlist.

Released on Nov. 13, 2015, One Direction’s fifth album, “Made in the A.M.,” immediately surged to the top of Billboard and iTunes charts, falling just behind millennial superstars like Adele and Justin Bieber.

In contrast to the band’s previous albums, “Made in the A.M.” was the first released with just the four band members. Its songs ring with a misty nostalgia that could only be a reference to the band’s days before the breakup.

But their album isn’t just misty nostalgia– it’s break ups (both friend and romantic ones) and pump up tunes — it’s stories of love and it’s party anthems.

Topping the charts and the album, “Drag Me Down” has a consistent rock beat, complemented by confident lyrics and defiant statements like “Nobody can drag me down.” Yet it still has the air of sentimentality, claiming that “all my life, you stood by me,” suggesting that these days might be over.

“Perfect,” the third song in the album, mirrors the idealistic romances that is their most typical style, promising that if he cannot be “the knight in shining armor,” or “the one you take home to mother,” he can still “be the one, be the one tonight.” Its balance of One Direction’s signature steady drum beat and its interludes of reflective, instrumental, laid-back verses make it the “perfect” song for any occasion, whether it be the drive out of school on Friday afternoon or the late night studying session.

For those who loathe pop-infused upbeat tunes, “If I Could Fly,” and “I Want to Write You a Song” boast the scratch of the acoustic guitar’s strings and offer a lulling image of young love through varied verses filled with promises. “If I Could Fly” wistfully vows that “For your eyes only, I’ll show you my heart,” and that “I’m missing half of me when we’re apart,” proving that these four boys are vulnerable and dependent, just like anyone else.

And at the “End of the Day,” if this variety doesn’t prove enough, One Direction has an ample selection of nostalgic ballads that are still buoyant enough to keep the positive spirit alive.

“History,” alludes itself to a bad end to a relationship, but knowing One Direction’s band struggles, it’s clear that beyond lyrics like “All of the rumors and all of the fights,” there is a much deeper meaning. “Thought we were going strong, thought we were holding on,” is the band’s plea of confusion, begging “so don’t let it go,” and that “we can make some more,” reasoning that “we could make the greatest team that the world has ever seen.”

As the album comes to a close, “A.M.,” the title song co-written by the four of the boys, ties together all the aspects presented throughout the album as a blend between the raspy acoustics, the whisperings of young love, the hype of a pop hit and the nostalgia consistent with the time period. “Won’t you stay till the A.M.?” the boys ask, reminiscing on times of “swimming around in our glasses,” and on what seemed to be everlasting hope obliterated by reality in the line “Like we’re all gonna make it.”

From sing-alongs to sentimental ballads, One Direction’s “Made in the A.M.” album is something of true craft, and it very well could have been written in the dreary hours of morning  when misty reflection is at its peak. Unlike how previous albums of theirs scream teen pop, this time the boys take on a more mature style, proving that their days on the top of the charts are far from gone: they’ve only just begun.