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  • Karlee Skipper

Review: "Victory" - Hunter Hayes

Hunter Hayes uses his latest single to lift the spirits of listeners with its empowering message. “Victory” explores the hardships and the triumphs in his life that have led him to where he is now. The final track on his upcoming album reminds the audience to appreciate the parts of their past that they may feel they should hide, because it is what made them who they are today. Hayes uses the first verse to set the stage for the wins and losses in his life. He sings, “I’ve been broken// I’ve been fine// I’ve been happy// and I’ve lied// I’ve been all the things I swore I wasn’t half the time.” These lines have an effortless flow to them that welcome the listener to the track and make them anticipate the message. The pre-chorus builds on this anticipation, slowly unveiling his gratitude for the past. In the chorus, Hayes sings, “I'm breathing in and out// And that's enough for now// I had my heart ripped out// I'm finally healing// My pain has set me free// I'm finally finding me// And that's a victory// That I can believe in.” With these profound lyrics, and the reveal of the hook, the listener is comforted by the song. They are encouraged to never give up and to find hope for their own future. Even if they are facing trying times in the present, their pain may lead them to their own “victory.” Then in the second verse, Hayes continues to sing about the changes he has seen in himself since this acceptance, and how he now knows that it is okay to not be okay. This is a crucial message to pass on to listeners and Hayes does it in a way that makes the audience cling to his every word. “Victory” is an inspiring track that perfectly encapsulates the feeling of letting go of your self-doubts and finally being free of these negative thoughts.

“Victory” is a dynamic track that utilizes sounds from multiple genres to create the perfect, upbeat indie-pop song. The song kicks off with a unique string instrumental that reels in the audience, before switching to a few muted strums on the guitar. Then, Hayes begins singing and the guitar transitions to fingerstyle. In the background, there is a soft beat that disappears once the pre-chorus hits, adding emphasis to Hayes’s flawless falsettos. When the chorus hits, the full energy of the track bursts to life. The guitar and the drums work together to boost the inspiring lyrics in the song and fill the listener with joy. Then, in the bridge, it is only Hayes with the guitar, providing the emotional climax of the track, before exploding back into the final chorus. The song’s outro consists of only Hayes’s vocals and the guitar, adding one final emphasis to the uplifting lyrics. The track then closes with one final sound effect: a cassette tape ejecting, providing a unique, classic element to the song. Throughout the track, especially in the energetic chorus, Hayes’s voice is filled with a fiery passion that represents the emotion behind the track. He truly believes in what he is singing, and wants to spread this positive message to his listeners. He has a rasp behind his compelling voice that audiences effortlessly fall in love with and keeps them wanting more from the versatile artist. Hayes has an undeniable talent that is shown through his longevity in the industry and his unique genre-blending style. “Victory” is a vast difference from some of Hayes’s earlier work that garnered massive attention and awards, emphasizing his impressive range and unmistakable ability to keep fans on their toes.

Hunter Hayes is an American singer, songwriter, producer, and multi-instrumentalist. His music has crossed over multiple genres and he is skilled in more than 30 instruments. In 2011, he released is self-titled debut album which became massively successful. The album peaked at number 7 on the Billboard 200 Chart and number 1 on the Top Country Albums. The album is certified platinum and includes his most-successful single, “Wanted”. He is the youngest male artist to top the Billboard Hot Country Songs. Additionally, he has been nominated for five Grammy Awards including Best New Artist and won the 2012 CMA Award for New Artist of the Year. He has headlined eight times, and toured as the supporting act for prolific artists such as Taylor Swift, Carrie Underwood, and Lady A. His upcoming album, Red Sky, is set for release on April 21, 2023 and, he will start The Red Sky Tour on May 3rd, 2023. Check out his social media to see if he is coming to a city near you!

Written By Karlee Skipper



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