Caleb Hyles is an internet personality, YouTuber, singer/songwriter and musician from Montgomery, Alabama. I’ve previously reviewed his covers on YouTube, which you can check out here. However, today, I will be reviewing his debut album of original tracks, In One Breath, which was released on 14th January 2022.
‘Not My Own’ opens with a quirky string driven melody, with a subtle percussive beat underneath, that supports his tremendous vocal delivery. I’ve been listening to Caleb do covers for years, and I love his voice. I think he has tremendous range and talent and he still manages to impress. This track has a very quick, energetic delivery, and you get caught up from the very first moment. I like that even during this opening number he isn’t afraid of a track with clear diversity, the slowed down section towards the end, and the piano elements truly serve to flesh out the track even more.
‘On My Own’ has a heavier percussive note off the bat than the previous track but it keeps the same powerful show stopping energy that is at the core of all of Caleb’s performances. I love that he also sometimes just let’s go completely, these powerful vocal sections that just knock you flat. Plus, he’s spent years singing so many different songs, for so many different types of vocalists, so throughout even just one song you get a breadth of his range and depth as a performer.
‘Goodbye, Monday’ starts off slow, with a little piano driven melody, an alternative chord structure that slowly eases us into the track. I like that it starts off slow but builds the heavier, percussive notes, blending with the softer style he’s chosen to deliver the vocals in this track. It’s really impressive, it has a sonorous, almost pop quality to it which works well for the track, and yet on the back end, the bass and the harder edge almost bring it around to a rock number.
‘Stay’ captures the same energy that ‘Goodbye, Monday’ left us with, it is a very rock inspired number, a lot of guitars, bass and drums all driving forward with phenomenal depth and energy. A very strong number that has a great vibe to it.
‘Privilege’ shakes things up, a more emotional, melodic song after the previous entry, and I’ve always thought that Caleb had a voice for emotional, ballad style tracks, and this is a truly standout number for him. I really liked the flute melody towards the end, I did not expect it and it really added something to the track overall.
‘Sometimes You Just Forget Things’ has a broadway style vibe to it, and the relatively subtle musical accompaniment at the beginning really gives him a chance to shine vocally, and man it’s so easy to fall in love with his voice. The emotional depth of this track alone is tremendous, but what really captured me was that it wasn’t an overly bombastic performance and yet you could feel just how much of himself that Caleb put into the performance. So for all that and more I think this takes the top spot on this album for me.
‘Wasting Time’ is another explosive rock infused track, and man he really hammers it home, battling back and forth with the infusion of strings and percussion, his voice is equally suited to this, as it is to the style of the previous entry in this album. I love the constant, striking energy of this track, and how it just carries you with it as it goes.
‘Survival In Disguise’ slows things down, becoming once again sombre and soulful. I like the diversity of style present so far, and yet each track is dripping with complexity, emotion and depth that unite even the most disparate of musical elements. I really liked the rolling drum beat in this track, it added a nice layer to the overall musical composition.
`Leave a Light On For Me” keeps with the softer and more theatrical style, and man Caleb really knows how to tell a story with his music. This track is a raw expression of emotion, and has such lyrical sincerity and sweetness that you just get caught up in it.
‘I’ll Name Her Song’ is more of the more stripped back songs on the album, and yet from that we really get to see the skill and capabilities of Caleb, and it’s for this reason that it’s right behind ‘Sometimes You Just Forget Things’ as my favourite track on the album.
‘Amber and Rain (ft. Jonathan Young)’ starts off with a soft, trilling, melodic instrumental that leads into some superb vocals. Also It’s always good to hear Jonathan Young, who joins Caleb for this track. The pair have collaborated together before so I know their vocal styles mesh really well. Also I can’t place why but something about the style of this reminds me of a Disney track, like maybe something off of Hercules.
‘In One Breath’ is both the title track, and the last track on the album so it has a lot of pressure to be good, and trust me it doesn’t disappoint. Similar to the previous track, this one also has a Disney quality to it, something hard to define but nonetheless this track would not sound out of place in a Disney movie. It’s a very powerful number, a really strong closer to what has been an album of stand out numbers and tremendous performances. I especially like how it faded out with the gentle piano chords.
So that’s what I thought of Caleb Hyles’s debut album ‘In One Breath’ and if you want to check that out for yourself you can head on over to Spotify. Please consider supporting Caleb on Patreon so he can continue to make content. You should also check out his website, and you can keep up to date with Caleb by following him on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.
First Published on: https://offtherecordblog.org/