‘Charlie’ Brings Happy Lyrics and Catchy Rhythms


Atlantic Records

Charlie Puth released his third studio album “Charlie” on Oct. 7.

Angela Xu, Staff Writer

After a four year hiatus, Charlie Puth released his new album Charlie on Oct. 7, and the wait was absolutely worth it. Despite having made music in 2019, Puth was unhappy with its quality due to a heart-wrenching breakup he went through, so he scrapped it. He decided to return to his roots of catchy lyrics and rhythms since he thought he was ‘pretending to be a cool guy.’ Turning over a new leaf in 2022, Puth gathered 12 songs into his self-named playlist for us to enjoy.

In true Puth fashion, a combination of rhythmic background drums and repeated phrases causes these songs to reverberate in your head throughout the day. Every song shares the similar message of heartbreak, but he manages to portray and respond to it differently each time, whether it’s regretting falling out with the lover or finally getting over the grief. Your heartstrings are pulled so hard in every direction you can’t help but be drawn to the beats.

Below are my opinions about a few songs off of Charlie.

That’s Hilarious 

As the track starts off with calm whole and half notes on a textured electric piano, the emotion in Puth’s lyrics is instantly noticeable. Not too much later, chords take over in the background while the music slowly escalates as if it’s about to blow up. It builds to the best part of the song while Puth drops an f-bomb (caution: mild swearing) and flawlessly transitions to the chorus. The crescendo, the emphasis on the beat drop, the pause before ‘that’s hilarious’ is stunning. It’s hard to rhyme ‘hilarious’ with anything, but Puth did it with flying colors.

Sure, you could say it has a weird rhythm and is overly repetitive, but I think that just makes it easier to remember. You can vibe to it even if you’ve never been in a breakup. Is it the best breakup song ever? No. Is it still an absolute work of art I recommend you listen to? Yes.

Charlie Be Quiet!

With gentle guitar, a soft voice, and a disparaging title like that, you’d think this song is going to be about his insecurities, right? Wrong! As the song progresses, Puth builds confidence through both lyrics and volume with background claps to support him. Then, boom! Suddenly, you hit the peak of the song that is the chorus. Electric guitars replace quiet acoustic ones, bringing a delightful thrum to the music. Charlie will not be quiet, thank you very much.

It may constantly repeat itself, but the sheer contrast in volume when these same lines are sung again gives off a multitude of emotion while he’s pouring out his heart. This song was definitely worth bursting my eardrums for. 

Left and Right (Feat. Jung Kook of BTS)

A collaboration with BTS, who would’ve thought? Nevertheless, this has to be one of the most interesting songs I’ve ever listened to. A steady drum beat keeps this song afloat as the call and answer pattern ensues throughout the whole song. They played around with spatial audio which really added depth when directions were mentioned. 

With snappy lyrics like “I can feel you over here / I take up every corner of your mind” adding to the already growing layers of this song, this is definitely a good song to enjoy on your way to school. A pleasant song, plus a duet with a K-pop idol? Win-win situation.

When You’re Sad I’m Sad

Out of all the songs on the album, this one sticks out the most. In my opinion, this is the only one that starts like a heartbreak song should. It starts off with a piano softly playing in the key C# major, and the first lyrics sung sound so utterly defeated that you can’t help but be dragged down with them. The rollercoaster of emotions that is the song ends with a fade so depressing that you want to take the ride again to see if there’s an alternate ending.

Most pop songs — Puth’s are no exception — have their verses build up to a dramatic chorus. Not this one. The diminuendos and single word solos with the ever present piano accompaniment portrays the raw emotions you would experience during a good cry.

Puth certainly showed some exemplary work in this album, really picking himself back up after his breakup, an experience many people go through. Whether you relate to what he went through, or just want a new album to listen to, this album should be at the top of your list.