John Mayer's new 2013 release Paradise Valley is delightfully easy to digest, and a refreshing effort to listen to. A critically acclaimed release this summer, Mayer is ready and eager to launch a world tour to perform his new music live.
Paradise Valley is a effort full of instrumental prowess, genuine wit and class. Perhaps this album can been heard as the second half of a double album, as Mayer is truly excited to go back on tour with a healthy singing voice after vocal problems in 2011-12.
After surgery and healing, Mayer is back and better than ever, with a gifted backing band and sound that has built and evolved from his 2011 album, Born and Raised.
The opening track of Paradise Valley "Wildfire" soothes Mayer fans with a cheerful mood and atmosphere of summer, the perfect reflection of a summer song.
"Dear Marie" is a gorgeous and lovely little folk song as Mayer repeats the first line in each verse. Throughout the album, Mayer's songs show his enormous growth in the craft of songwriting and song structure. His guitar playing is appealing and charming, as he continues to break new ground, capturing gorgeous new sounds with his various pedals and amps.
"Waiting on the Day" is an acoustic gem that explodes into utter joy and happiness with a rockin' ending, as he sings "will you be there for me all the day?/Will you love me all the day?/Will you hang your things and stay?" arguably a notable highlight of the album.
Track 4 "Paper Doll" is Mayer's single on the album, with groovy lead guitars, beautiful vocals, witty song structure and lryics, and killer percussion and bass backgrounds.
The rest of the album is dynamite, a grand slam! Perhaps "Badge and Gun" is the hidden gem of the album, and this writer's favorite.
Paradise Valley is definitely worth picking up at your local record shop. It's resonance and artistry should likely win new fans over and bring back those who have forgotten about his music in previous years.