14 Songs, 53 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

Mayer compressed the writing/demo/recording stages into one to create his most direct, instinctual musical expression to date, donning protective gear and combing the battlefield for emotional shrapnel. “Heartbreak Warfare,” “War of My Life,” and “Assassin” address the conflicts of love and loss, while “Who Says” is a defense of simple pleasures. “Friends, Lovers, or Nothing” and “All We Ever Do Is Say Goodbye" stack up nicely.

EDITORS’ NOTES

Mayer compressed the writing/demo/recording stages into one to create his most direct, instinctual musical expression to date, donning protective gear and combing the battlefield for emotional shrapnel. “Heartbreak Warfare,” “War of My Life,” and “Assassin” address the conflicts of love and loss, while “Who Says” is a defense of simple pleasures. “Friends, Lovers, or Nothing” and “All We Ever Do Is Say Goodbye" stack up nicely.

TITLE TIME
13
14

Ratings and Reviews

4.3 out of 5
4K Ratings
4K Ratings
thisjustin_02 ,

John Mayer version 3.0

I've been a long-time fan of John Mayer body of work. The man can seriously write music and is probably one of the best guitarists living today. In my opinion, he's had three phases to his career. The first being his pop phase, Your Body is Wonderland and all the screaming girls and what not. Super catchy stuff. Heavier Things did just that...got a a little heavier and electric, but still catchy. Second phase, John got really into blues. He did the amazing Continuum- spit out the bubble-gum and proved that he could do the blues too. Also, the John Mayer Trio record came out. Apparently we do still love the blues.

That being said, I can see what John meant when he said Continuum isn't really a record you can follow-up he had to start something new. And that's what this is. Compared to his earlier work, this album comes across as a deeply personal and more mature record. The arrangements are organic and yet technical at the same time. You can tell John has done some living since Room For Squares and learned about love and war and how much they have in common sometimes. This definitely isn't as accessible as some of his old stuff, but that's ok...this is a album you're going to have to listen a few times to get the feel for. I've only listened to it a couple times and was surprised at what I missed the first time. This one is about the details.

67Mustang ,

Lazy Conceit!

This is painful. After the huge success of Continuum, a wonderfully crafted album, John has thrown together a pile of songs with unimaginative lyrics and even worse arrangements. His guitar playing is lazy, at best. It is as if he is shouting, "I can do no wrong!" Well John, this album proves you can do wrong. This is sorry stuff.

StephenHero ,

Good with the Chance to be Great

Must Haves:
-Heartbreak Warfare
-Assassin
-Edge of Desire
-Friends, Lovers or Nothing

Growing on me:
-War of my Life
-Half of my Heart

I'm not going to lie, upon first listen I was disappointed. The songs were slow, lingering a little too close to country for my tastes. With exception Heartbreak Warfare, nothing especially stood out. The amps in Crossroad sounded like they were underwater and Who Says phoned in by a guy high on his own ego. After following John's Battle Studies website for almost a year now, I guess I just expected more. And boy did I find it when I was willing to look.

John did bring his "A" game. Don't be fooled because the songs here aren't as easily digestible as they have been in years past. Depending on how well you know him, or maybe more importantly, how much you're willing to invest, you will find an album that was worth the wait and your time. This album is not easy and it's better for it. John took his time and got his hands dirty. "Drop his name/Push it in and twist the knife again/Watch my face/as I pretend to feel no pain"(Heartbreak Warfare) "Think we'll never fall into/The jealous game/The streets will flood/With blood of those who felt the same"(Friends, Lovers or Nothing) And what makes it all worth it is the genuiness. His lyrics, his singing, his music, despite what the media has portrayed him as, are the real John Mayer.

I don't think this is his masterpiece. As John's gotten older, it seems as if his music has become more sad, his views more cynical. And while I appreciate the realism of his subject matter, I can't help but wish for him to find that spark that lights the fire between the hope of his youth (St. Patrick's Day & City Love) and the wisdom of his experiences ( Stop This Train & Edge of Desire). As for Battle Studies, I like it. With time, I hope to someday cherish it.

John, Thank you. Keep fighting the good fight.

-Aaron Sanchez

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