Staying relevant in the increasingly competitive and crowded world of country music is no easy task. If you’re not a superstar like Luke Bryan or critically acclaimed like Sturgill Simpson, you’re simply fighting to be heard every single day. It’s a constant battle of trying to please yourself, your fans and your label. That last one is the one lower tier major label artists have to worry about. Chase Rice is currently in that position as he releases the new single off of his new upcoming album. I already talked about his weird letter he sent out about this song and upcoming album. He basically apologizes for this new single “Whisper” and promises the album to be better. In addition Rice has said in multiple interviews that fans should start listening to entire albums instead of just singles and has said that “Whisper” was basically a leftover from his last album Ignite The Night that he didn’t want to sit on the shelf. Well it’s good he apologized for it because it’s terrible. And it would have been better left on the shelf too.
The song begins with Rice uttering shhhh and the sound of scratchiness in the background. I guess this is to set the mood? Then Rice starts to the sing and I wonder to myself: what the hell is up with his voice? You can barely hear him. It sounds like Rice has been shrunk down to the size of an action figure and then recorded the song at the bottom of a five gallon bucket. I know what they’re going for here is that Rice is whispering the song and trying to be sexy, but it comes off more as lame whimpering. And why do these male country artists continue to record sexy songs when they’re voices are the opposite of it? You get to the lyrics of this song and they’re as generic and bland as possible. It’s the last thing you’ll be thinking about when hearing this song, especially when the production of this song whiplashes in so many directions that you get dizzy trying to keep up with it. There’s electric guitar riffs, a token banjo, drum machine loops and a backing chorus straight out of a 2000s Jason DeRulo song. Everything about this song is a schizophrenic, misguided mess. And yet you can’t even get that angry about it because it bores you more than angers you.
I hope to hell Chase Rice is recording better music than “Whisper” for his new album because this is just flat out awful in whatever genre you would put it in. The shortest way I could possibly describe this song to you is “Ride” part two, a song that was basically a prelude to this one and had just as ridiculous production. Rice is capable of more and promises to show more, but until he walks the walk he will continue to be judged by songs he releases like this one. You can’t be a deep artist unless you put out deep music. “Whisper” is the opposite of deep. It’s shallow, vapid and boring. It’s a complete waste of time and you’re better off for not hearing this song.