“I

Kuwait Times - - WEEKENDER -

t’s in­evitable that ev­ery­thing that’s good comes to an end,” sings One Di­rec­tion on “Love You Good­bye,” a wist­ful song from the Bri­tish band’s fifth stu­dio al­bum, “Made in the A.M.” The tune is about a ro­mance’s demise, but the quar­tet - this is their first al­bum since Zayn Ma­lik’s de­par­ture - could just as well be ad­dress­ing their up­com­ing hia­tus. Since their first al­bum, 2012’s “Up All Night,” One Di­rec­tion’s sky­ward tra­jec­tory has seen the band seam­lessly segue from chart-top­ping albums, re­li­ably de­liv­ered ev­ery Novem­ber, to sold-out sta­dium tours with lit­tle down­time in be­tween.

One Di­rec­tion has al­ways been mu­si­cal mag­pies - closely ref­er­enc­ing The Who on “Best Song Ever” or Def Lep­pard on “Mid­night Mem­o­ries” - and that habit doesn’t stop here. With its echoes and big drum beat, al­bum opener “Hey An­gel” con­jures up Rob­bie Wil­liams; the break­down of the hit sin­gle, “Drag Me Down,” mines “I Knew You Were Trou­ble” by Harry Styles’ ex, Tay­lor Swift; and don’t even get me started on the sim­i­lar­ity be­tween acous­tic crooner “I Want to Write You a Song” and the Bea­tles’ “Black­bird.”

De­spite the im­i­ta­tion game, One Di­rec­tion’s strength has al­ways been the vo­cal ar­range­ments and the sat­is­fy­ing pop hooks the lads bring. On “Made in the AM,” they add in a play­ful ex­per­i­men­ta­tion, per­haps em­bold­ened by their pend­ing break, on doo-wop and horn-fla­vored “Never Enough,” which is, oddly enough, punc­tu­ated by cave­man-like grunts, and the ex­u­ber­antly retro “Olivia.” Should this be their swan song, they leave on a high note. — AP

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