ANNIE REUTER Sounds Like Nashville • NOVEMBER 12, 2015
Chris Young is one of the best vocalists in country music and his fifth album I’m Comin’ Over showcases this and so much more. Young co-wrote nine of the 11 songs on the release as well as co-produced for the first time with Corey Crowder. While the album features the Grammy-nominated singer’s distinct baritone, it marks new territory for the singer/songwriter/producer as several of the songs embody a slight R&B vibe with memorable drum loops.
“‘I’m Comin Over’ honestly is such a sonic bridge for me,” Young says of his current single in a press release. “It’s a bridge between what I sounded like on the last record and what we’ve done on this one. It’s not like I went out and just completely blew up everything I was doing, but there’s obviously a lot more loops. There’s a lot more stuff that we created in pre-production and brought into the studio along with the musicians. I think that this song is a really good introduction to what you’ll hear on the rest of this record. There’s R&B elements that we brought into some of the songs, and you definitely hear that on top of the second verse. It’s really simple. It’s really short, just a tiny, little moment, but it’s definitely stuff that we wouldn’t have done in the past.”
Those drum loops can be heard on Young’s striking duet with Cassadee Pope, “Think Of You” too. Written by Young, Crowder and Josh Hoge, “Think Of You” has Pope and Young trading verses telling the tale of a couple who used to be the life of the party when they were together. Their voices meld effortlessly together, no doubt making the song a memorable moment in their 2016 tour.
Heartbreak makes up the majority of I’m Comin’ Over as can be heard on songs like the Vince Gill-assisted “Sober Saturday Night” and the gut-wrenching “I Know a Guy.” But sad songs have a history in country music and it’s something many people have gone through, a fact not lost on Young.
“They’ve had that night where it’s like, ‘Man, I’m so depressed, I don’t even want to leave my house. I’m just going to sit here. I don’t even want to try to drink myself out of being depressed,’ and it’s powerful,” Young says. “But I think there are touch points — I think that’s really what this record is. Hopefully everybody relates to each one of these songs and they have their own experiences.”
While the sad songs demonstrate Young’s vocal ability as the listener can feel the hurt in every lyric he sings, he equally shows his capability to have fun on the more upbeat, arena-ready anthems like feel good summer jam “Sunshine Overtime” and the gritty “Underdogs,” which shows an edgier side to the singer with plenty of guitar distortion.
Young has said I’m Comin’ Over is the most personal record he has made. It also happens to be his most versatile as he played a major role in writing and producing the album himself. While title track “I’m Comin’ Over” leads the charge as Young’s fastest growing single of his career, the album itself sets Young apart from the pack of male vocalists as he enters into producer territory. I’m Comin’ Over showcases why Young is regarded as one of the best singers in the business. He may need to start making some room in his already busy schedule for the role of producer.