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ToC Critic’s Pick: Carrie Underwood, ‘Heartbeat’ [Listen]

Heartbeat
Arista Nashville

Carrie Underwood admits her performance on “Heartbeat” is personal — she had husband Mike Fisher in mind while writing and recording the amped-up ballad. Like so many songs on Storyteller, she didn’t need to say it for us to know.

“Heartbeat” is about as steamy of a lyric as fans can expect from Underwood. It’s a classy love song that yearns for physical touch. The romance is implied, with a great second verse getting as close to carnal as you can expect.

“I wanna feel it like a kick drum / Beating faster in your chest / I wanna feel you holding onto me / And make me hold my breath,” Underwood sings over piano, pedal steel and drums. Sam Hunt garnishes the song with harmonies.

“You pull me closer / My head on your shoulder / Baby, we won’t need a song / We’ll make a falling star wish / One more slow kiss / What are we waitin’ on.”

Underwood’s second single from Storyteller embraces a synthetic, more pop-friendly arrangement without feeling like she’s playing hokey-pokey with the genre that made her a star. It’s a fine line she’s pressed up against, but few will accuse her of selling out like they do other stars (Hunt, Luke Bryan) who’ve tried something similar. This is one of two songs co-write Zach Crowell produced, and the result is a bigger, more orotund finished product that soars into each chorus.

“And tonight I wanna drive so far / We’ll only find static on the radio / And we can’t see those city lights / And I love the way you look in a firefly glow / Saying everything without making a sound / A cricket choir in the background / Underneath the harvest moon / Standing on your shoes in my bare feet / Dancing to the rhythm of your heartbeat.”

“Heartbeat” is one of the signature songs on Storyteller and was a bettor’s pick for a follow-up to “Smoke Break.” With Hunt’s inclusion, expect the track to race to the top of the charts as fast as any from Underwood’s decade-long career.

Key Lyrics: “Standing on your shoes in my bare feet / Dancing to the rhythm of your heartbeat.”

Did You Know?: Underwood on her perfect date night: “I’m the kind of person, I just want to be alone, with him, and be one on one,” she says in the video below.

Listen to Carrie Underwood, “Heartbeat”

Carrie Underwood Explains “Heartbeat”

Next: Everything You Need to Know About 'Storyteller'

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