Blues Rock | 47 mins
For the majority of new musicians, selling albums is the most difficult thing to do. For artists like John Mayer, releasing your fourth studio album means it’ll probably sell itself. The challenge then becomes creating music that still resonates with your fans the way that first album did.
The tracks “Assassin” and “Crossroads” offer a glimmer of hope that the second half might try and offer up something new. However, listening on makes it clear that there’s nothing to find. You might as well dust off “Heavier Things” (2003), his sophomore album that came with a unique, fresh sound (in its time) with hit tracks like “Bigger Than My Body” and “Daughters.”
One of the things about John Mayer that is easy to like is how he almost effortlessly blends rock, R&B and jazz into an emotional fusion that many listeners find instantly appealing. His hit single “Gravity” is a good example, with it’s crooning guitar and steady beat. “Battle Studies” almost seems to take a leaf from a few pop albums while attempting to rehash a few Mayer classics, ending on “Friends, Lovers or Nothing,” a track that sounds like we’ve heard it a thousand times before.
Don’t mistake this critic. It’s a good album, an easy listen and sure to be favorite for Mayer fans. Perhaps, it was simply wishful thinking that a three-year wait would warrant something new.
For people who like:
Jason Mraz, Jack Johnson
and Matt Nathanson.