Movie Songs

Every August Moon Song In The Idea Of You, Ranked Worst To Best

May 10, 202411 Mins Read


  • The movie
    The Idea of You
    features multiple original songs by the fictional boy band August Moon.
  • August Moon’s One Direction influence is showcased in some of their best songs including “Closer.”
  • Other songs like “Guard Down,” while good, don’t necessarily match the tone of the movie.

The Idea of You features quite a few original songs by the fictional boy band August Moon. Although the Prime Video movie, which was directed by The Big Sick‘s Michael Showalter, primarily blends the romance, comedy, and drama genres, it could also be considered a musical due to the sheer amount of original songs contained on its soundtrack. This stems naturally from the story, which is based on the novel of the same name by Robinne Lee and follows the love affair between Harry Styles-inspired singer Hayes Campbell (Nicholas Galitzine) and divorced single mother Solène Marchand (Anne Hathaway).

While the duo is the focus of the movie, the Idea of You cast features many other performers, particularly Jaiden Anthony, Viktor White, Dakota Adan, and Raymond Cham Jr. as the other members of Hayes’ One Direction-styled boy band. Various August Moon performances are showcased throughout the movie while Hayes and Solène’s romance plays out. To lend the songs true boy band credibility, “What Makes You Beautiful” scribes Albin Nedler and Carl Falk were brought on to co-write the majority of the original soundtrack, though some August Moon songs ultimately fit the movie better than others.


Does Nicholas Galitzine Really Sing In The Idea Of You?

In the Anne Hathaway age-gap romance The Idea of You, Nicholas Galitzine plays boy band member Hayes Campbell, but does he really sing in the movie?

7 “I Got You”

Written By Babyface, ILYA, And Savan Kotecha

The Idea of You movie pays homage to Harry Styles’ boy band days in many ways. One of those is the lyrical content and orchestration of “I Got You” capturing the feel of early downtempo One Direction songs such as “Little Things” and Gotta Be You,” with the latter song, which was the second single from the real-life band’s first album, seemingly providing the inspiration for the title. However, the August Moon performers don’t seem perfectly comfortable working together in this register, and the harmonies seem miscalibrated, presenting a soundscape that is a little too bright for the emotional song.

This may be because the song’s function in the movie is to isolate a heartfelt performance from Hayes as viewed through Solène’s eyes rather than to present a realistic boy band-style performance. By rendering the other members of August Moon narratively extraneous, this song does something of a disservice to the movie’s attempts to capture the feel of an actual boy band. Boy bands, and One Direction in particular, tend to have a more even distribution of lines from each member of the group rather than exhibiting the solo feel of “I Got You.”

The deluxe version of the
Idea of You
soundtrack also includes a live mix of the song titled “I Got You (Live from the Desert).”

6 “Taste (R3HAB Remix)”

Written By Albin Nedler, Carl Falk, And Savan Kotecha

This track is a remix of an original August Moon song featured elsewhere in The Idea of You. The mix was done by Dutch-Moroccan DJ R3HAB, adding yet another layer of the contemporary music scene into the movie, which includes sequences set at the real-life Coachella as well as references to iconic real-life artists including Fiona Apple between the performances and storylines featuring the fictional band. This helps ground August Moon and their overall modernized One Direction pastiche within the current pop culture landscape as it would actually be known to any sufficiently music-savvy viewer.

Ultimately, the remix feels extraneous compared to the other original songs, because it doesn’t add any new material to the already extensive August Moon catalog. However, it provides a jolt of energy that the movie needs. Although the story can be frothy and fun, it also features its fair share of downbeat moments as Hayes and Solène navigate the dark side of their fairy tale romance. Sometimes it is necessary to cut the tension of more intense moments such as Solène being dogged by the paparazzi or worrying that her romance could irreparably damage her relationship with her daughter.

5 “Guard Down”

Written By Albin Nedler, Carl Falk, And Savan Kotecha

Of all the songs featured in the Harry Styles-inspired romance, “Guard Down” is one of the ones that feels least like it would have come from a boy band like One Direction. This isn’t necessarily because of its genre, which provides a different instrumentation from the rest of August Moon’s tracks. Boy bands have historically experimented with genres, bringing various musical influences into their pop albums. This is also true for One Direction, who brought more and more rock instrumentation into their music as time went by and even experimented with a pub song sound in their 2013 track “Happily.”

However, “Guard Down” feels first and foremost like a song by Bruno Mars. Mars, who is also known for blending genres from across cultures and throughout time, is a solid musical influence for any performer, but his sound is too distinctive to blend well with the rest of August Moon’s tracks, which match the One Direction energy a bit better. Nevertheless, the songwriters drawing from the same influences as the 15-time Grammy winner does give this song a vibrant bounciness and exuberant pep that is lacking from a track like “I Got You.”

The deluxe version of the
Idea of You
soundtrack also includes a live mix of the song titled “Guard Down (Live from the Desert).”

4 “Taste”

Written By Albin Nedler, Carl Falk, And Savan Kotecha

The issue with “Taste” is that it sounds like exactly what it is, which is a song designed to play during a movie without distracting too much from the goings-on onscreen. The track plays second fiddle to the relationship between Hayes and Solène, which is hardly a problem when it comes to the movie itself, as depicting their relationship is its primary goal. This also doesn’t necessarily differentiate it from authentic boy band music, a genre in which the lead singles are almost inextricably paired with the visuals of the music videos that bring them to life.

However, it is somewhat less compelling than other August Moon tracks when listened to out of context. Given its glossy production and impersonal lyrics, it is also the song that feels most like it could be dropped into any story or commercial and still function properly, rather than being born out of the circumstances of the exact movie in which it is playing. It makes sense that this would be the one song from the soundtrack to receive a remix, as it is the least distinctive of the group of songs that feel more like genuine boy band tracks.

The deluxe version of the
Idea of You
soundtrack also includes a live mix of the song titled “Taste (Live from the Barcelona).”

3 “Dance Before We Walk (Acoustic Version)”

Written By Savan Kotecha And Carl Falk

This is one of just two August Moon songs that have alternate versions on the official soundtrack with substantial changes, acting as something of a motif for The Idea of You. The major distinction between the acoustic version of “Dance Before We Walk” and the remix of “Taste” is that the acoustic track is the farthest thing from extraneous. This song is key to the movie’s depiction of Hayes Campbell as an artist interested in both writing music and playing instruments, two talents that are not otherwise showcased by his onstage performances with August Moon.

In addition to allowing the audience to gain some insight into the inner workings of the band, this song underscores the way that Hayes is opening up to Solène and making himself vulnerable in a way that compels her to fall in love with him despite her misgivings about their respective ages. On top of its function as a storytelling tool, the acoustic version of “Dance Before We Walk” also functions quite well musically. It allows Galitzine to express the indie singer-songwriter side of himself that he has showcased during performances on Instagram but not elsewhere in the movie.

2 “Closer”

Written By Savan Kotecha And Carl Falk

The brief spoken-word moment in the pre-chorus where the music drops out is as attention-grabbing as it gets, pulling in the listener before they are awash in compelling rhymes that effortlessly drag them from one line to the next. In addition to being a solidly crafted pop song, “Closer” is the only August Moon track that lyrically evokes the Idea of You age-gap romance. The fact that it is thematically tied to the burgeoning love between Hayes and Solène gives it an extra spark, especially when it is made abundantly clear onstage that Hayes is singing it directly to her.

However, the song avoids feeling on the nose by perfectly evoking classic One Direction tracks. While the reference to the song’s love interest being “a little bit older” may seem slightly more risqué than the average boy band single, it mimics the fact that the band began embracing the naughtier side of their lyrics as early as their second album, Take Me Home. In the timeline of the movie, August Moon has been famous for at least two years, which puts them at the perfect analogous point to the real-life One Direction timeline to have released a single like this.

The deluxe version of the
Idea of You
soundtrack also includes a live mix of the song titled “Closer (Live from the Desert).”

1 “Dance Before We Walk”

Written By Savan Kotecha And Carl Falk

This is where those real-life August Moon boy band credentials truly shine. “Dance Before We Walk” was chosen as the lead single to promote the Idea of You soundtrack, and it makes perfect sense that this would be the case. While it has a more modern sound that doesn’t necessarily have a direct compositional analogue to a song from the One Direction discography, it is joyful and buoyant in the same vein as their hit singles such as “What Makes You Beautiful,” or “Best Song Ever,” capturing the spirit of the band significantly more than a song like “Guard Down.”

The “Dance Before We Walk” release was followed by the singles “Taste” and “Closer.”

The song is dominated by a scalpel-sharp hook, but it also has a playful opening that takes its time before launching the listener into its exuberant chorus. It also boasts the strongest harmonies of the entire soundtrack, allowing Hayes’ bandmates Oliver, Adrian, Simon, and Rory more time to shine. More than any other August Moon track, it makes the fictional band at the center of The Idea of You feel like a genuine boy band that operates like a well-oiled machine and has genuinely earned the adulation that the movie depicts coming from their legions of devoted fans.

Click here to watch The Idea of You on Prime Video

The Idea of You (2024)

Based on the acclaimed, contemporary love story of the same name, The Idea of You centers on Solène (Anne Hathaway), a 40-year-old single mom who begins an unexpected romance with 24-year-old Hayes Campbell (Nicholas Galitzine), the lead singer of August Moon, the hottest boy band on the planet. When Solène must step in to chaperone her teenage daughter’s trip to the Coachella Music Festival after her ex bails at the last minute, she has a chance encounter with Hayes and there is an instant, undeniable spark. As they begin a whirlwind romance, it isn’t long before Hayes’ superstar status poses unavoidable challenges to their relationship, and Solène soon discovers that life in the glare of his spotlight might be more than she bargained for.

Michael Showalter

Release Date
May 2, 2024

Anne Hathaway Nicholas Galitzine , Ella Rubin , Annie Mumolo , Reid Scott , Perry Mattfeld , Jordan Aaron Hall , Mathilda Gianopoulos

115 Minutes

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