The Bottom Line
Gym Class Heroes deliver an ode to perseverance. It sounds like they have a third big hit from the album Papercut Chronicles II. Ryan Tedder provides signature martial percussion and a winning pop hook. His sweet featured vocals are icing on the cake. However, does this really sink in as something powerful?
- Catchy beat and featured vocal from Ryan Tedder
- Gently anthemic lyrics
- Solid pop package
- A bit similar to other recent hits
- Written by Travie McCoy, Disashi Lumumba-Kasongo, Eric Roberts, Matt McGinley, Ryan Tedder, and Noel Zancanella
- Produced by Ryan Tedder
- Released May 2012 by Fueled By Ramen
Guide Review - Gym Class Heroes - "The Fighter" featuring Ryan Tedder
It still sounds like the raps from Gym Class Heroes leader Travie McCoy lack the heft to really carry a song like this. Instead, "The Fighter" sounds more like a Ryan Tedder solo single with guest raps from Travie McCoy. However, regardless of the actual credits, this is a catchy song with a light touch appropriate for summer pop radio airplay. The "Firework"-lite lyrics will have everyone singing along.
"The Fighter" kicks off with a rap about resilience from Travie McCoy that slowly builds into a trademark sweet Ryan Tedder chorus punctuated by a martial percussive beat. By now the beat structure will be familiar to fans of Ryan Tedder productions from Kelly Clarkson's "Already Gone" to Adele's "Rumour Has It." It is a pulse that is instantly engaging and a major element that is likely to drive "The Fighter" up pop radio playlists and the Billboard Hot 100.
It seems that experience has turned Gym Class Heroes into consistent hitmakers. The formula is clear. Take a lightly uplifting rap, weld on a strong hook from top level pop songwriters and producers, and then punctuate it with a strong featured vocal. "The Fighter" is a bit light, and similar in theme to a lot of recent songs by other artists, but it should be a worthy follow up to the smash hits "Stereo Hearts" and "Ass Back Home."