Harry Styles’s debut album featured a song called “Kiwi” that never mentioned the fruit once. The music video? Lots of cake. No kiwis. This time around, Styles is not messing around with the fruit. Two songs on his second studio album, Fine Line (out today!), are named after fruit, the lyrics are full of references, and each of the pits for his world tour are named “Watermelon” and “Cherry.” What does it all mean? To be fair, even Harry doesn’t know where the references are coming from. “They seem to be happening by accident, then when I kind of put the album together at the end, I realized there is a lot of fruit on this album,” he said on Capital FM. Maybe it’s his subconscious warning him against scurvy? Let’s peel back the fruit and see what’s actually going on.
“Watermelon Sugar” gets to the good stuff immediately.
“Tastes like strawberries on a summer evenin’ / And it sounds just like a song / I want more berries and that summer feelin’ / It’s so wonderful and warm”
What isn’t strawberry but tastes like strawberries? Hmm. Almost as soon as the song came out, fans clocked that “Watermelon Sugar” has an alternate meaning that would not get the green light if he was still in One Direction. Zane Lowe, from Apple Music Beats 1 Radio, puts it best. According to him, “Watermelon Sugar” is about “the joys of mutually appreciated oral pleasure.” But Harry refused to admit that “Watermelon Sugar” is a dirty, dirty sex song. He has an image to uphold, you know?
The chorus is just Harry wailing “Watermelon sugar high” over and over again, almost as if in ecstasy. Then, later in the song, he’s absolutely begging for a little more sweetness with “I just wanna taste it, I just wanna taste it / Watermelon sugar high.” Not only is “Watermelon Sugar” Harry Styles’s most fruit-forward song, it’s also his sexiest song ever. We saw the “Lights Up” music video and we still didn’t see “Watermelon Sugar” coming.
In Fine Line’s third single, “Adore You,” Harry references different fruit to describe the joy he feels when he’s around this particular girl. He calls it a “strawberry-lipstick state of mind,” which immediately conjures the image of Glossier lip-gloss ads. It could mean lips stained from eating too many strawberries, red lipstick, or, if we’re basing this on the definitions “Watermelon Sugar” created, Harry could be referencing his favorite pastime, oral sex.
In the second verse, Harry sings “Brown skin and lemon over ice,” a summertime vision. Nothing good comes from looking up “lemon over ice.” It’s all extremely vulgar Urban Dictionary definitions that we’re hoping — praying — Harry isn’t invoking on “Adore You.” This lyric can be taken way more literally. A nice lemonade with your girl on a sunny day? Who wouldn’t think that’s a miniature heaven?
The title of Harry Styles’s breakup song fits perfectly with the album’s fruit motif, but it actually has nothing to do with fruit. The song “Cherry,” for which the Cherry Pit is named, never once mentions the little red fruit. That’s because “Cherry” isn’t actually a fruit reference. It’s a reference to his former main squeeze. It’s a combination of Harry Styles’s and Camila Rowe’s (his ex-girlfriend) names. Technically, it’s “Charry,” but that just isn’t as cute as Cherry. Harry wrote the song while feeling “not great” about their breakup. It gets at all the awful, jealous, and yearning feelings that come after being dumped. Think about that while standing in the Cherry Pit at Madison Square Garden. Not so fun.