John Mayer
Continuum


4.5
superb

Review

by Joe Costa USER (34 Reviews)
May 8th, 2007 | 17 replies


Release Date: 2006 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Yeah, it's John Mayer. Now put aside your prejudices and listen to this beast. Continuum is pretty much ear sex.

Blues and pop-rock have never really been my musical forte. I’ve always thought that blues, while obviously requiring a great amount of talent, was sort of boring and uninteresting, coupled with the fact that most blues lyricists really have nothing to relate to a teenager such as myself. Pop-rock has never really held a tremendous amount of appeal either. Sure, I always enjoyed Matchbox 20, but really, that was about as much as I enjoyed the genre as a whole. It just struck me as fairly uninventive and the kind of music that should be the soundtrack to a failing marriage. However, upon the urging of a good friend of mine, I decided to give John Mayer’s latest effort, Continuum a listen and what I discovered was a stellar effort by a talented musician and songwriter that even I could enjoy.

Mayer’s guitar playing was the key point of attraction in my case. Toted all over magazines such as Rolling Stone as “the next guitar hero”, his playing on the album certainly lives up to all of the hype. Rooted in blues for the most part, Mayer’s solos are always well constructed and seem to fit the song perfectly, such as the liquidly minimalist lead in the album’s highlight, Gravity. Also notable is the Jimmy Hendrix cover of Bold As Love, which Mayer nails perfectly with the punchy and energetic swagger of the original. Even when Mayer isn’t soloing though, his rhythm work is nearly as impressive as the solos Continuum has to offer. The Heart of Life offers a beautiful and hypnotic guitar line anchoring the song down where the percussion would usually sit, while on the other end of the spectrum, Waiting on the World to Change offers a jaunty and vibrant rhythm, making it the most upbeat song on the album.

However, Mayer’s superb fretwork is not the only appeal here; Mayer is also a pop musician, and as such, has the knack for writing stellar pop songs. Nearly every song incorporates a killer hook that you will be repeating over and over in your head long after the record is over. A prime example of Mayer’s superb lyricism and song writing abilities is evident in Stop This Train: “Singing stop this train/I want to get out and go home again/I can't take this speed it's moving in/I know I can/Cause now I see I'll never stop this train”. It is lines like this that drive Continuum and make it one of the most instantly memorable albums I have had the pleasure of listening to recently.

But even then, guitar work and memorable songwriting can’t carry and entire album all on their own; Mayer’s voice is something spectacular to behold as well. While being slightly gravelly at points, it is very easily the most enjoyable aspect of the album. Mayer has a very unique tone, remaining as smooth as most pop artists with that extra grit that sets him far beyond any comparisons. Dave Matthews is about the closest one can come, but still, the comparison really doesn’t do Mayer’s silky delivery justice.

Continuum is nearly flawless. It succeeds on many levels where his previous efforts faltered, incorporating an even amount of blues and pop influence to make one of the most easily enjoyable albums I’ve listened to in my reviewing career. While the album is almost perfect and there is really no bad song, at times Mayer’s guitar theatrics can wear a little thin and some of the songs may blend together and pass by without a trace. Although it is a fairly rare occurrence, it does keep it back from classic status. However, Continuum is still a fantastic listen, and probably my surprise favorite of last year discounting Underoath’s latest. Anyone who truly enjoys music and approaches this with an open mind should find a very rewarding listen contained within.

Recommended Tracks:
Gravity
Slow Dancing in a Burning Room
The Heart of Life
I Don’t Trust Myself (With Loving You)



Recent reviews by this author
Small Brown Bike Our Own WarsAlucard After Dark
Texas Is the Reason Texas is the ReasonThe Falcon Unicornography
Cracker Kerosene HatStrung Out Blackhawks Over Los Angeles
user ratings (706)
Chart.
4
excellent
other reviews of this album
Alex Getter (5)
Got a brand new blues that I can't explain....

Adam Knott EMERITUS (5)
Despite its lack of concept, Continuum's honest, blues-pop evaluations of truth, belief, war and lov...

liljigga (5)
"The Mayer" is in the building! Before you criticize, you make a better album....

Alex Silveri EMERITUS (4.5)
...


Comments:Add a Comment 
mynameischan
Staff Reviewer
May 8th 2007


17945 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

hey the evanescance soup is thickening

http://www.sputnikmusic.com/news.php?newsid=3339

Skyler
May 8th 2007


1084 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Great album, although I still prefer his live album over this.

AtavanHalen
May 8th 2007


17927 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

This is fucking fantastic! Well done, I love John Mayer!
Really, really, really good writing.

chckn440
May 8th 2007


15 Comments


solid review

StreetlightRock
Emeritus
May 9th 2007


3780 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Hey man, great review, well written and straight to the point. I agree =D

Wildhoodlum
May 9th 2007


45 Comments


Nice.

Intransit
May 9th 2007


2797 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Damn, this got tossed from the front page quick. Oh well.

Thanks for all of the compliments and stuff. I hope I did the album justice.

Two-Headed Boy
May 9th 2007


4527 Comments


My dad has this. Might give it a spinaroo.

superfascist
May 9th 2007


118 Comments


This album was a letdown from all the expectations I had for it, but regardless it's still some of his best work.

dub sean
May 19th 2007


980 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0 | Sound Off

nice review man!

Intransit
June 12th 2007


2797 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

It is ridiculous how much I have grown to love this album. Personal classic for me, and pretty much a benchmark in contemporary pop music.

RandyfromPennywise
June 12th 2007


752 Comments


Really terrific review, well done.

StrizzMatik
July 17th 2007


3229 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

This can't touch John Mayer Trio. Sorry.

Intransit
July 18th 2007


2797 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

dude John Mayer Trio is so lame compared to this album. He may be instrumentally better, but the song writing is much better on this album than all but two songs (surprisingly the covered on this album) on that album.

StrizzMatik
August 8th 2008


3229 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Yeah I totally changed my mind on this album. It's f*cking great but I still prefer his live renditions/the Trio a bit more.

cbmartinez
August 8th 2008


2525 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

This is in my opinion one of the top 5 greatest albums ever. Possibly my favorite album of all time. Mayer is the most talented songwriter of our generation, amazing voice, incredible guitar player. The lyrics on this album are fantastic, so mellow, perfectly complimenting his soulful voice. Nice review.

mynameischan
Staff Reviewer
August 8th 2008


17945 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

yeah this is pretty great



You have to be logged in to post a comment. Login | Create a Profile





FAQ // STAFF & CONTRIBUTORS // SITE FORUM // CONTACT US

Bands: A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z


Site Copyright 2005-2014 Sputnikmusic.com
All Album Reviews Displayed With Permission of Authors | Privacy Policy