September 25, 2006 12:00 PM

Continuum

REVIEWED BY CHRIS STRAUSS

POP-ROCK

As anyone who’s read a newspaper recently can attest, this planet ain’t no wonderland. Kicking off his latest release with the Curtis Mayfield-influenced groove “Waiting on the World to Change,” this multiple Grammy winner attempts to illustrate his generation’s frustration with current events, complaining, “It’s hard to beat the system, when we’re standing at a distance.” While he makes an admirable attempt to move beyond the cloying sentiment of “Daughters” on Continuum, he doesn’t exactly channel Bob Dylan. Emboldened from sessions with B.B. King, Mayer does show immense growth as a guitarist, highlighted by a daring rendition of Jimi Hendrix’s “Bold as Love.” The usually mush-mouthed singer (who has recently been linked with Jessica Simpson) is surprisingly articulate predicting the demise of a relationship on “Slow Dancing in a Burning Room,” proving that he may want to rethink his lyrical spectrum until he has as tight a grip on world issues as he does on matters of the heart.

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DOWNLOAD THIS: “Slow Dancing in a Burning Room”

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