Since April 7th, when Harry Styles dropped his first solo single, “Sign of the Times,” we’ve been trying to figure out what the melancholy ballad is about. The song struck as powerful but different. His solo career premiere sent one very strong message; Harry Styles isn’t going to be one of those “on the nose writers”, and we’re totally intrigued.
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Many have theorized “Sign of the Times” is a disenchanted look at our current political state, a lesson in not learning from our past mistakes. “We never learn, we been here before,” he sings. While this theory was thoughtful and powerful, it’s incorrect. Harry recently sat down with Rolling Stone and opened up about what his first single is really about.
“The song is written from a point of view as if a mother was giving birth to a child and there’s a complication,” he told the magazine. “The mother is told, ‘The child is fine, but you’re not going to make it.’ The mother has five minutes to tell the child, ‘Go forth and conquer.'”
With this new context, take a listen:
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Heartbreaking, right? The second verse, in particular, has us standing on the ledge of The Ugly Cry:
“Just stop your crying, have the time of your life
Breaking through the atmosphere
And things are pretty good from here
Remember everything will be alright
We can meet again somewhere
Somewhere far away from here”
This mother is departing this world, comforting a son for the first and last time, and hoping they will someday meet again. *grabs tissue*
It’s clear Styles won’t be beating around the bush when it comes to tough topics with this new album, which leaves us itching for its May 12 release.
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