John Mayer - Continuum
Release Date: September 12, 2006
Record Label: Aware/Columbia
“And if we had the power/to bring our neighbors home from war/they would have never missed a Christmas/no more ribbons on the door.” John Mayer aims straight for the heart with his poignant fourth studio album, Continuum. The anti-war anthem and lead single “Waiting On the World to Change” gives listeners, both old and new, an idea of how far Mayer has come. To be frank, this is no “Your Body Is A Wonderland.” With Continuum, Mayer broadens his fan base by infusing a very blues and R&B-influenced sound. On the next track, Mayer strips down the soft-pop sound and builds “I Don’t Trust Myself (With Loving You)” around an effervescently jazzy guitar piece. He has proven both his durability and versatility as a songwriter with Continuum. Mayer designs each melody delicately in order to best capture the listener’s heart; this stellar CD should attract an amalgam of old and new fans.
You may not find an artist so enigmatic, so appropriate to put out an album like Continuum for quite some time, so enjoy it while it lasts. 2006 has been a year so far that has proved spotty for thoroughly constructed releases, with most albums lacking serious staying power. Songs like the acoustically focused “Stop This Train” will dance in your head for hours. Of note, this is possibly the song most reminiscent of Mayer’s previous work, with the guitar throughout and a loose piano melody in the background to provide some depth.
Whether it is the late-60’s Hendrix cover (“Bold as Love”) or the seductive “Slow Dancing in a Burning Room,” John Mayer has proven he is more than just the Top 40 juggernaut of years past. He highlights his musical diversity and talent with Continuum. This is one of the best albums to hit shelves in 2006, and even if you still don’t think Mayer is for you, give him a chance. What if you dislike it? Go cry about it, why don’t you?