Robert Lowe, Staff Writer
It’s been four years since the 2013 release of John Mayer’s sixth studio album “Paradise Valley.” Since then, Mayer has been on the road for his own tour, as well as two tours with the band Dead and Company.
Mayer revealed in a September 2016 tweet that he plans to go return to the studio with the same group of people with whom he recorded his 2006 album “Continuum.” These plans were later confirmed in another tweet by Mayer in January of this year.
On Jan. 20, the wait finally ended as Mayer released “Wave One” of his new album, “The Search For Everything.” The release marks Mayer’s seventh studio album.
Mayer explained that he wrote more songs than would fit on a normal-sized album so he opted to release it in four-song “waves” once a month until the full album is released.
“The Search For Everything – Wave One” starts off strong with the opening track, “Moving On and Getting Over,” which features layered vocals that create pleasant harmonies that fit nicely on top of a smooth jazz, R&B-esque melody. The track builds to a classic Mayer guitar solo before returning to a swinging groove for the outro.
The second track on the EP is “Changing,” a song that visits the topic of the continuous growth and changes one experiences through life. Starting with just piano and vocals, the song shifts away from the up-beat groove of the first track to a much softer feel. As the track progresses, it opens up with the full band before transitioning into a soulful guitar solo heavily infused with blues influences.
“Love On The Weekend,” the third song on the EP, was released as a single in November of 2016. This is a classic up-beat, feel-good, pop tune that tells a modern, long distance love story. On this track, Mayer returns to his classic pop rock sound reminiscent of his 2009 album, “Battle Studies.”
“Wave One’s” closing song, “You’re Gonna Live Forever In Me,” ends the EP with a soft, soothing piano ballad. The track opens with piano and whistling like that of a Randy Newman piece. Guitar takes a backseat on this track, as the simplicity of the music allows room for Mayer’s vocals to shine in the spotlight. This tender ballad ends Wave One a soft and powerful note.
Based on this first wave, it appears that this album is going to be somewhat varied, touching on several sounds from Mayer’s past music, plus more. It is still unknown how many total “waves” will be released but this first is a strong start.
Mayer fans should be on the lookout for “Wave Two” to be released this month.