Ryan Aderrey “Breathe the World In”
No one will blame you for not expecting much. Not even Ryan Aderrey. His new single, “Breathe the World In”, is an unintentional response to successive generations of nascent or now iconic pop stars who’ve forsaken anything resembling a substantive or sincere statement. He is an articulate songwriter comfortable with objective observation and surprising vulnerability, but he’s also capable enough to contribute to the songwriting process in a real way. Aderrey, unlike others, handles the majority of writing for new material and his ear for critical parts, like the vocal melody for instance, sets him apart from many of his peers.
The single backs this up in a number of ways. Aderrey’s bright enough to understand good pop music doesn’t last because of fads, it lasts thanks to a strong musical base. “Breathe the World In” benefits tremendously from an acoustic guitar pumping beneath the keyboards, bass, and drums. The aforementioned vocal melody takes surprising twists and turns that slaps a fresh coat of paint on otherwise familiar subject matter. While Aderrey’s song title and subject matter risk cliche, he fills the song with enough unique imagery and turns of phrase to negate any potential criticism.
The rhythm section tries their best with poor recording and an uninspired arrangement. The track lacks any real modulation in how it presents them. They inexplicably leap out from the mix, beating listeners upside the head, and call too much attention to themselves. The instruments should help more in accentuating the song’s melodic strengths, but Aderrey’s songwriting is content for them to continue plodding along and hammering out a disappointingly regular backbeat. The chorus needs more punch, considering the subject matter, and seems to restrain it surprisingly.
There’s enough good writing here to justify a listen. Aderrey’s performance isn’t quite on par with his writing, but even a brief glance at the lyrics shows a songwriting clearly looking towards higher peaks ahead.