True confession: usually when I watch music videos for the very first time, I look for “the headline.” I know, I know: it’s the journalist in me. My ears may be on the song, but my eyes scan the moving footage for something unexpected to stand out: maybe a surprise celebrity guest-star who plays the love interest, maybe a reference to a famous feud, or some Easter eggs that are a treat for longtime fans.
So I have to admit, while I watched Niall Horan‘s new music video for his song “Too Much To Ask” on its first play, I completely failed as a journalist, in the traditional sense. I found myself genuinely absorbed by the storyline. I watched to enjoy: focused not on finding any connections to his One Direction days or figuring out which ex-girlfriend may have left his heart shattered, but instead marveling at his fresh country-inspired sound and his truly honest vision that came to life like a short film.
I wanted to know why he was traveling the London Underground alone, put off by the sight of one of those PDA-packed couples in love that always pop up when you’re least in the mood to see them. I fixated on the visual of Niall sitting perched at the end of a bed, which is actually my personal place to ruminate when things are feeling off-track in my own life.
I wanted to know why I was so easily seeing my own self in him, when at first comparison, superstar Niall and I have literally nothing in common.
On my second watch, I looked closely for the story I was going to tell you in this article, and the phrase that came to me was “thank you.” No matter how much I have loved new music before, it has been a long time since I was this instantly transported somewhere beyond my laptop thanks to a music video, and the feeling reminded me of why I became a celebrity news writer in the first place.
After a first few view loops, what I have to say about and to Niall is “Thank you,” for sharing a story specific and personal enough to feel genuine, but relatable enough that we can all recognize a little bit of the song’s heartbreak. I have a feeling that every person’s interpretation of this clip will be different upon different replays, but enjoyable just the same.
Make sure to check out Niall’s brand new music video above, and leave us your reactions to it below. If you, like me, just NEED to see this song and more off of his upcoming album performed live, you can check out his album details and US tour dates here.