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Synth Single Review: "Baby, Don't Let Go" by John Cao

Karl is a longtime freelancer who's passionate about music, art, and writing.

Artwork for John Cao's new single, "Baby, Don't Let Go"

Artwork for John Cao's new single, "Baby, Don't Let Go"

These are dark, strange times and while I appreciate music that reflects this fact, sometimes I just want to get away from the madness of the world and John Cao has been coming through in a big way lately. I reviewed his single “Do You Ever Think of Me” a few weeks ago and really dug his sound. Now he’s released “Baby, Don’t Let Go” and his feel good, synth poppy magic is alive and well on this release too.

The cascades of sparkling synth that open this track give way to an energetic rapid fire vocal delivery that has a unique timbre and feeling about it. John Cao’s voice has that pop quality that allows him to sound great delivering this sort of fun, upbeat vocal melody and there’s a bouncing gyration to the beat that is infectious along with those bright flashes of synth that dance through the track. The bass that throbs through the track provides a nice, solid underpinning for the other musical elements along with a heartbeat from the drums that drives the track forward.

This is a song about being caught up in an exciting moment of passion that leads to dreams of the future. It’s a song about taking a chance and seizing what life gives to us. The intensity of that initial moment is captured in the lines that say, “You and I caught in a loop of time/My whole life keeps flashing when our skin touch/Fall into you at the speed of light/Feel your heartbeat harder than the kick drum.

As John Cao’s voice cries out the lines, “Baby, let’s do something crazy/Run away with me, yeah” the dream starts to climb to a new level and the next lines are “Lately, I’ve been such a good boy/Lemme be your good boy/I can see you waking up next to me daily.”

After the chorus that brims over with that excitement and thrill that permeates the song, one of my favourite verses appears as John Cao sings, “Strobe lights ignite dark blues in your eyes/Fly me to the far side of the moon.” It’s an image that’s strong and conveys more of the spirit of the song.

Finally he asks, “Can we make the world stop?/ Hold me tight and don’t let go, baby.” I was quite captured and captivated by the energy and vibe of this song. It really just felt good to hear!

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Things are stressful right now in the world and every time I play one of John Cao’s tracks, I feel like I can relax and let the sparkling synths and exciting, uplifting lyrics transport me to a better, calmer place.

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