Now that Carrie Underwood’s fifth album Storyteller is out for fans to enjoy, the promotional wheel continues turning with the release of the second single Heartbeat. Given that the album was introduced with the country rock of Smoke Break, it makes perfect sense that a ballad would follow suit, showing a different side of Underwood’s sound.
In practice, Heartbeat is a rather straightforward song, with its minimal verses existing as a dramatic build-up to the bombastic, yet fittingly heartfelt chorus. Rather than making waves with its instrumental, the song’s major shining point is Underwood’s vocals. The presence of frequent collaborator Sam Hunt as her backup singer compliments her vocals perfectly, with the pairing of their vocals and the echoing effect it creates adding a deeper element to the song, both in terms of sound and aesthetic. The lyrics, speaking of a perfect, secret moment between you and your lover, lend themselves particularly well to the pairing of the vocals and their chemistry together, and in turn complete the package, making for a particularly touching combination.
At its core, Heartbeat is nothing new; it covers a familiar topic with a familiar sound behind it. However, the sentimental and thematic vocals bring the song to a whole other level; had it been performed differently, the song may have ended up being less entertaining. As it stands, however, Heartbeat is a particularly enjoyable little gem that wears its heart proudly on its sleeve.