Almost exactly a year after releasing its third album, “Midnight Memories,” enduring boy band One Direction returns Nov. 17 with its fourth album, the cleverly titled “Four” (Are they in cahoots with Maroon 5, who just released “V,” their fifth album? Also, not to be confused with Huey Lewis & The News' “Fore” album)
The British quintet announced the album via YouTube, as well as informed fans about the availability of 24-hour free download of “Fireproof.” Two of the band”s members, Louis Tomlinson and Liam Payne, co-wrote the new tune with John Ryan, Jamie Scott and Julian Bunetta.
“Fireproof” is a mid-tempo, sweet, wistful tune, which features, per usual, the members trading lines about a love that goes on despite the odds. A drum loop propels it forward, as a nice electric guitar line gives it some heft. It doesn”t have an undeniably catchy chorus or build like “Story of My Life,” but it”s a nice sign as to where the boys are musically now and it sneakily grows on you with repeated listenings.
Boy bands have a built-in shelf life and One Direction continues to make the absolute most of its time in the sun. The band recently finished a wildly successful worldwide stadium tour and its three previous albums have sold more than 46 million copies. “Midnight Memories” was world”s best-selling album in 2013.
There are still plenty of albums to be announced for the fourth quarter- including (though unlikely) potential Adele and U2 releases-but it”s starting to shape up with Taylor Swift on Oct. 27; Foo Fighters, Nov. 11; One Direction Nov. 17, and Garth Brooks the week after. It's not going to be enough to safe the continuing downward sales spiral (as Katie Hasty wrote about here), but we're probably looking at four weeks where the No. 1 album sells at least 500,000 copies in its opening frame).
“Fireproof” is below the album announcement.