How do you learn to un-love someone? How do you go from calling someone darling to having to address them by name again? Allison Crutchfield’s Charlie evokes these questions. “And Charlie I call out your name but I still call you darling in my mind.” She sings, grabbing listeners by the heartstrings and tugging until we find that feeling inside of ourselves too.
Charlie opens with a plucky guitar, leaving us with the impression of a folk song until we’re greeted by the backing synths that introduce a fresh lightness of the track. Allison Crutchfield’s voice is a tricky one. She’s able to switch from the voice of an aching heart to a voice that’ll rot your teeth with its sweetness. This dynamic creates this bittersweet nostalgia in the track. Crutchfield’s tone sprinkles sweetness onto otherwise sour words as she battles with the idea of missing someone, but know you’re not supposed to want them back after all is said and done. This song shares a rather intimate look into domestic life with Charlie. The vocals begin to overlap and layer one another towards the end of the song, making it seem like an internal conflict—an argument with only herself.
Crutchfield tells us a story in under three minutes that some songwriters fail to capture within whole albums. She captivates listeners with her lyrics, yet she chooses to spare us of specific details that might otherwise hinder our listening experience but shares enough to keep it personal, heartfelt, and easy to relate to.
Image credit: Jesse Riggins