Arts, Music

Charlie Puth Shows off His Vocal Range and Lyrical Wordplay on New Album ‘CHARLIE’

★★★★☆

Charlie Puth’s namesake album CHARLIE is as personal as its name suggests. 

It’s his first album since 2018, and it showcases his talent and impressive vocal range. CHARLIE, which came out on Oct. 7, speaks to the feelings and emotions of someone going through a breakup or someone involved in a sort-of relationship. 

“That’s Hilarious” is a perfect opener for the album. It immediately demonstrates Puth’s impressive range, and the lyrics and musical structure make it feel like a conversation. The notes come in quick succession, giving the impression that Puth is pouring his heart out to the person who broke his heart. 

“Tryna make me feel guilty for everything you’ve done / You’re another lesson / You’re just another lesson I learned / Don’t give your heart to a girl who’s still got a broken one,” Puth sings.  

Puth examines his experiences and emotions from various angles across the albums as he draws out life lessons for his listener. He appears to be trying to make sense of what has happened and framing it as a lesson.

“Light Switch” and “There’s A First Time For Everything” are both fun songs. Although they discuss serious relationship dynamics, the synthesizer and the dance beats give them an ’80s vibe. 

One of Puth’s greatest strengths is his perfect pitch. His talent enables him to create backing vocals that complement his main vocals seamlessly. All of the vocals on the album are just Puth harmonizing with himself, which is an impressive musical feat. 

“There’s A First Time For Everything” also features Puth’s fantastic falsetto. His broad vocal range is on display, dipping into low notes but also soaring up to the very heights of his falsetto. In the songs “No More Drama” and “Smells Like Me,” Puth glides from his lower register to his falsetto cleanly.

The other standout songs, “Left and Right,” featuring Jung Kook of BTS, and “Loser,” stray into structural experimentation of the songs. “Left and Right” plays with audio output, shifting the sound from one side to the other in headphones, creating an immersive experience in the music. 

Puth indulges in some wordplay as “Loser” plays with homophones. 

October 23, 2022
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