Review: John Mayer ‘The Search For Everything’

John Mayer’s approach to the release of this long awaited album was more than promising. From the calculated lead off single “Love on the Weekend” to the strategic extended play roll out and even the seemingly apt song titles (notably “Emoji of a Wave”), The Search For Everything campaign was admittedly exciting and fresh. It looked as though Mayer was ready to evolve and deliver a punchier record in sync with modern times.

Looking at the final product, however, it’s clear that none of that build actually paid off. Despite presenting itself as an exciting new project, a delve into The Search For Everything quickly reveals a sanitized, bland record with a lack of substance. Aside from one or two tracks (“In the Blood”) built for adult contemporary radio (with possible crossover appeal), nearly every track trudges on in the one of two patterns: (a) plucky guitar opening followed by monotone vocals over verses that lead into underwritten hooks or (b) piano opening followed by the same emotionless vocal performance over similarly underwritten hooks.

Even “Still Feel Like Your Man” (which was written about Katy Perry), arguably one of the record’s most ‘honest’ and dynamic pieces, still feels like it could’ve been recorded by anyone about anyone. Further, the energy level enhanced by this track’s initially twinkly, lite pop production deflates with time until it sounds just as washed out as the rest of the monochromatic, coffeehouse friendly songs that compose this dud of an album.

It’s not 2001 the mid 2000s so why release an album that’s stuck there?

Best tracks: “Love On the Weekend”, “In the Blood”
Rating: 3.8/10

John MayerPopRock

cdschart • April 17, 2017

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