Chris Brown sheds his tough image and admits he’s hopelessly in love in the sensitive power ballad “Echo.”
The single immediately begins with the chorus. Brown says that if he ignores his feelings, nothing will happen and he won’t get hurt. However, he realizes he will lose her if he does that. He blurts out that he wants to be with her. However, he has to forget what he father taught him: revealing emotions is a weakness.
“Close my eyes/Let the whole thing pass me by/There is no time/To waste asking why/I’ll run away with you by my side/I’ll run away with you by my side/I need to let go, let go, let go, let go of this pride/(Asking why).”
After the chorus, a fragile guitar sets a defenseless tone.
In the first verse, he says that he broods over her lovely face. He remembers her gray eyes that glimmered. He broke up with her, telling her he need space and time to figure things out. He regrets the breakup now. Although he said it was likely they would get back together, he wonders if she’s dating. It’s driving him crazy. He fears that she’s found someone else. He prefers not to know and wants to move past it as soon as possible. It should be something they will never speak of again.
“I think about your face/And how I fall into your eyes/The outline that I trace/Around the one that I call mine/Time that called for space/Unclear where you drew the line/I don’t need to solve this case/And I don’t need to look behind.”
The chorus is sung again.
In the second verse, she offers him an ultimatum: change or the relationship is permeantly off. His father abused him and he wonders if he will ever recover from it. Brown can still hear his insults in his mind. It’s something he can’t forget, regardless of how much he has tried. He finds something to cloud his mind. It’s temporary but it dulls the pain for a while.
“Do I expect to change, the past I hold inside/With all the words I say/Repeating over in my mind/Somethings you can’t erase, no matter how hard you try/An exit to escape is all there is left to find.”
In the chorus, he adds that he won’t be able to really love someone until he is able to let go of his childhood. She’s the only person he’s been able to tell.
“Close my eyes….Until this echo, echo, echo, echo in my mind (I know I always loved you, I know I always loved you)/Until this echo, echo, echo, echo can subside (I know I always loved you/I know I always loved you).”
The second chorus is sung again.
Chris Brown is the bad boy with a heart of gold. He’s tortured by his past. It has made him afraid to be candid about his life. There is so much to him that his girlfriend doesn’t know. However, he squanders any sympathy gained by playing games with his girlfriend. He seems to want her to wait for him forever. His impossible expectations of wanting her to be free when he’s ready to talk. He’s also unable to deal with the fact that she may have decided to move on. He’s become dependent on her and can’t let her go.
The musical arrangement has a problem as well. It remains low-key and then at the chorus, Brown shouts the last two lyrics. It’s disjointed and tacked on.
It’s like a “let’s get back together” speech heard from a significant other years ago. It needs to be forgotten.