Louis Tomlinson has spoken to NME about finding his artistic identity in his new music, calling it “an ever-evolving process”.
Last week (September 1), the star announced details of his second solo album ‘Faith In The Future’, which will arrive in November.
Before the new record was confirmed, Tomlinson sat down with NME backstage at his own festival, Away From Home in Malaga, last month to discuss the upcoming album and finding his feet post-One Direction.
“I had to finish the second album before I came out on tour,” he explained. “We started the tour in February and we’ve been going ever since, so I had pretty much 99 per cent of the record done then.”
‘Faith In The Future’ follows Tomlinson’s first solo effort, ‘Walls’, which arrived in 2020 – an album he says he’s still “immensely proud of”. “But it was quite hard to work out where I stood in the industry coming out of a band the size of One Direction and exactly what One Direction were,” he said. “There was an element of me going through my own development stage, but doing it in the public eye. I think where I’ve got to on this record, I feel really, really proud of, and it’s definitely songs that I think define me better as an artist.”
Tomlinson continued to explain that he had previously shied away from experimenting with sounds that might be on trend at the time, saying he had been worried about following trends too closely. “I am quite particular about that,” he said.
“I know sometimes that’s annoying to people, especially because of the first two songs I did. That really was me not necessarily listening to too many other opinions [but] because I had those two moments that I think didn’t really define me, it’s been important for me to just make my music as authentic as possible. Sometimes following trends, you lose a bit of that authenticity.”
Asked if he felt more comfortable in who he is as an artist now, the musician replied: “Yeah, definitely. That has been a process and I think it’ll be an ever-evolving process as well. But I definitely feel really comfortable about just following my heart musically and seeing where it gets me.”
The star also discussed this year’s Away From Home location, which moved the event from Crystal Palace to Malaga’s Marenostrum Fuengirola, which sits by the beach and has a castle looming over it on a neighbouring hill. “It was always the idea [to move around with it],” he explained.
“That was kind of a play with the title. We were looking at a few different venues, but from the minute I saw this venue, it just looks really, really interesting. There’s not a lot of venues that look like this. And also, I’d say three-quarters of my tour has been fucking freezing, so it’s nice to get some good weather.”
Watch our full video interview with Louis Tomlinson above now.