Release Date: Apr 14, 2017
Record label: Columbia
Genre(s): Pop/Rock, Adult Alternative Pop/Rock, Alternative/Indie Rock, Contemporary Pop/Rock, Blues-Rock
John Mayer first teased his seventh album, The Search for Everything, through a pair of EPs that contained eight of the record's 12 songs. It was a sly way for the singer/songwriter to ease back into his soulful side, a sound he largely abandoned during an extended dalliance with Laurel Canyon country-rock -- an infatuation that culminated in his position as a substitute Jerry Garcia in the Grateful Dead satellite group Dead & Company. Although it's ostensibly a breakup album, The Search for Everything doesn't feel haunted: Mayer glides through the record so smoothly, the supple sound seems almost insouciant.
You could easily describe John Mayer’s latest set in a single phrase: It’s a breakup album. But that glib shorthand does this probing set a disservice. While nearly every song addresses a lost love, the best ones deal with everything in life you can’t control, from the speed of your emotional evolution to your genetic makeup. “How much of my mother has my mother left in me,” Mayer asks during the crushing “In The Blood.” “What about this feeling that I’m never good enough? / Will it wash out in the water / Or is it always in the blood?” Moments like these make The Search for Everything the most deeply personal album Mayer has ever released.
John Mayer has spent the past decade cultivating a dubious notoriety. In an era somehow populated with multiple David Duke gaffes, he’s the guy whose reputation was tangibly harmed by it. He also makes music, which is perennially hampered by four problems. One: overcompensating with clever-clever lyrics and interview stunts because of a deep embarrassment at sharing a market segment with Shawn Mendes and Ed Sheeran.