Spotify is a bit of a strange thing sometimes. The scanner I use every Friday to check out for new releases has an own category for queer country songs – and they are not sorted into the other country songs. So, if you feel it may influence your judgement on his music: Hayden Joseph is gay. I don’t care, I loved his voice and some snippets of his debut album Different, before I decided to share it with you. The album has already been released on 25th February 2021 (i.e. on a Thursday).
Hayden Joseph – About The Artist
Hayden Joseph is originally from South Carolina, but is now a Nashville country music recording artist. He however pursued a business career, studying neuroscience and finance and worked in management consulting. He felt to need more time to invest into music. His first major steps on stage were with an a capella group at university. Since 2019, he is releasing music on streaming platforms. His debut single was the title track of his debut album, Different.
Hayden Joseph – Different – Track by Track
The eleven track album lasts 41 minutes. The last two tracks are other versions of the song 19 & Cryin’.
I wish I had a moment with a younger me
To tell him, different ain’t a bad thing to be
The album starts with the song Hayden Joseph’s professional career somehow started. I feel a song like this can easily fail – but Joseph indeed does a great job here. I like the intimate aura of the song. A definite beauty!
2. You’ll Come Around
After the quiet moments of the Different, You’ll Come Around is more powerful. I still like the way the guitar is used in here. The song is focused on Joseph’s voice, who profits from his a capella experience. Really good one.
3. 19 & Cryin’
Even though time has passed
Hearts don’t heal fast
After years at peace, well mine’s been reminded
I’ve grown up, I’ve moved on
I’ve been telling myself for so long
But the truth is I’ve been lyin’
Part of me is 19 and Cryin’
Not only because the song is published on the album in three different versions, 19 & Cryin’ is the central track of the album to me. Very good song. It comes with very relatable lyrics, a nice melody and the incredible presence in Joseph’s voice, which makes the track even more catchy.
4. My Name
My Name is Hayden’s way to do a small town life song. And again; I like that it is not a lyrical stereotype on repeat, but a really well-reflected about the pros and cons about the place When nobody’s a stranger and my name means everything.
5. Thrill Of The Chase
It ain’t higher education
Or perfect reputations
That keep me on the edge of my seat
You don’t need a million dollars
Or labels on your collar
That ain’t how my interest is piqued
It’s not about putting out
But rather casting some doubt
‘Round the way that you’re feeling
Keep me wondering how
Long you might make me wait
I’m all about the thrill of the chase
Thrill Of The Chase is the most powerful and rocking song of the album so far. So far, the Different album is a really great listen.
6. The Only One Who’s Prayin’
The intimate sixth track on the album is indeed a special one. Hayden is praising the support from his mother. A really beautiful one.
7. Over You
This one is a really nice to listen to breakup song. There are some parts of this song, especially at the end of each chorus, where I struggle with his voice slightly. It feels so nasal. But overall, I still enjoy to listen.
8. The Way I See You
Spend the day in my shoes
Honey, you’ll be surprised
It might be confusing
Seeing the world through my eyes
Most things look the same
The sky is still blue
But you’d be amazed
By the way I see you
Beautiful love song. No more comment. I just like it.
9. Let the Radio Remind Me
With Let the Radio Remind Me, the set of unique songs is closing on Different. I like the way this ballad has been set up with acoustic guitar and piano sounds. Nice finisher before the bonus versions.
10. 19 & Cryin’ (Stripped)
The stripped version of the song of course comes with limited instrumentation, so that you can listen to the song’s verses even better. I like the atmosphere of this version – but overall, you don’t need a stripped version – the artist’s voice is very clear and good to understand anyway.
11. 19 & Cryin’ (Pop Mix)
While I felt that the stripped version of 19 & Cryin’ is nice and comes with a nice atmosphere, I like the pop-ish version. But overall, the original is the best option.
Hayden Joseph – Different – Spotify
Here is the Different album on Spotify:
Hayden Joseph – Different – My View
Starting with the downside: there are not too many new tracks on the album – but, hey, it’s a debut, so that even I can live with that. Hayden Joseph published a beautiful recording of nine songs and two nice additional versions of the core song of the album. It is sometimes a bit of soupy, but I really loved to listen to this very promising debut. The only thing about this artist is that whenever you google him you run into Joseph Haydn, composer of the German national anthem. Top Pick!
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