No Judgment

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Kristin Smith

Album Review

Former One Direction member Niall Horan has released his third single, “No Judgement,” from his second studio album, Heartbreak Weather.

This track finds Horan channeling his inner Ed Sheeran here with catchy hooks, guitar strumming and smooth beats. And, of course, the track focuses on a mysterious woman whom Horan welcomes with judgement-free arms, any time of day or night.

‘Just Be Yourself’

Horan seems to have it bad for this woman. She’s not his girlfriend, but she is a woman he is obviously interested in: “Barefoot and a bottle of wine/You can stay with me tonight.”

Although the two aren’t committed to one another (“I get us breakfast in the morning/Or you can slip out in the night/You don’t have to give me a warning/’Cause we both got nothing to hide”), and might not see one another every day (“Even though we don’t talk for a couple of months, yeah/It’s like we didn’t lost anytime”), they’re both comfortable with their casual, undefined relationship (“I can be your lover or your shoulder to cry on/You can be whoever you like”).

The only goal Horan seems to have is providing what thinks of as a judgement-free, commitment-free zone where they can both come and go as they please: “When you’re with me, no judgment/You can get that from anyone else/You don’t have to prove nothing/You can just be yourself.”

No Strings Attached?

Just be yourself. No obligations. Come and go as you please. Spend the night if you want.

Such is Niall Horan’s conception of “freedom,” one in which there is no responsibility—and no real concern for the other person’s welfare. Niall tells the woman he’s interested in that she can be whoever she wants to be without labels. As for himself? Well, he will do the same while making sure his ears, and bedroom door, stay open for her.

Obviously, Horan’s “no judgment” setup is one that benefits him greatly: He gets to enjoy an attractive woman’s intimacy with no cost, no commitment, no complications.

At least, that’s what he wants us—and certainly her—to believe.

Kristin Smith

Kristin Smith joined the Plugged In team in 2017. Formerly a Spanish and English teacher, Kristin loves reading literature and eating authentic Mexican tacos. She and her husband, Eddy, love raising their children Judah and Selah. Kristin also has a deep affection for coffee, music, her dog (Cali) and cat (Aslan).

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