music reviews
This Month's Featured Equipment Reviews
Merrill Audio THOR Mono Block Amplifiers Review
Plinius Hautonga Integrated Amplifier Review
KEF R700 Loudspeaker Review
Marantz SA-14S1 SACD Player & DSD DAC Review
Genesis G7c Loudspeakers
10 Most Recent Music Disc Reviews:
Latest AV News
Music Software Forum Topics:
Most Popular Music Disc Reviews
Past Music Software News
 
John Mayer - Heavier Things  Print E-mail
Music Disc Reviews Audio CD
Written by Jessica Amen   
Tuesday, 09 September 2003


artist:
John Mayer

album:
Heavier Things
format: CD
label: Columbia Records
release year: 2003
performance: 6.5
sound 8
reviewed by: Jess Amen

Having been a fan of John Mayer’s last album, I was eagerly awaiting the release of the sequel. So eager I asked our Director of Content to make sure to get the album for review, three months ahead of time.



Mayer’s melodic guitar and inventive, sweet lyrics melted my sappy and music-loving heart, so I was anticipating much of the same this time around. But the smarter side of my brain should have reminded myself that once huge success is upon us, something is always lost from the original, pure, stripped and simple art form.

While all of my favorite elements of Mayer are still prominent in the second album, including thoughtful lyrics, sweet melodies and soothing guitar tones, I hear many new elements that do not please my ears. The addition of horns into the mix greatly disappointed me. The first track on the album, “Clarity,” is a great song. It starts out with a simple piano part and then the horns come in and ruin it. Another song I like is the sweetest song on the album, “Come Back To Bed,” about a couple fighting; he apologizes and begs her to come back to bed because it’s too cold. “You can be mad in the morning/ I’ll take back what I said/Just don’t leave me along here/It’s cold, baby, come back to bed.” How could you not fall for these lyrics? But again, it’s ruined with the addition of cheesy alternating horn riffs.

In addition to the nauseating horn parts, about half of the tracks have too much guitar, including the single “Bigger Than My Body.” On my first listening of the album, it occurred to me that I didn’t notice a single lyric. And after having loved the first album so much because of the lyrics, I wondered what was pulling my attention away from them. I later came to realize it was the addition of the horns, extra guitars and effects that were absent on the last album.

Call me a music snob. Most people wouldn’t think twice about the things that bother me on this album. But I only want the raw John Mayer, soothing vocal tone, sweet lyrics and simple but melodic guitar.

The album is worth buying. As a package, it offers 10 quality songs with about half of them being really good and the other half decent. It’s a different listening experience than his first album, but still fun and all of the good parts of Mayer and the album definitely stand out more then the negative parts. I hope he continues to put out albums, but steers away from the overproduction that can happen when success allows for a huge recording budget!







Like this article? Bookmark and share with any of the sites below.
Digg!Reddit!Del.icio.us!Google!StumbleUpon!Yahoo!Free social bookmarking plugins and extensions for Joomla! websites!
 

 
  home theater news  |  equipment reviews 
  blu-ray reviews  |  dvd  |  theatrical reviews  
  music download reviews  |  music disc reviews
  contact  |  about-us  |  careers   |  brands 
  Subscribe to Us   |   RSS   |  AVRev Forums
  front page  |  virtual tours  |  dealer locator
  how to features  |   lifestyle & design articles
  Want Your Home Theater Featured on MHT?
   CE Partners: HDD  |  HDF  |  VGT  |  SD  |  DVD
   
  Click Here to Advertise with Us | Specs
  Sponsors | privacy policy | terms of use
  909 N. Sepulveda Blvd. El Segundo, CA 90245
  Ads: 310.280.4476 | Contact Us
  Content: 310.280.4575 | Mike Flacy