AUDIO JUNKIE: John Mayer revisits the 80’s, Calvin Harris celebrates summer

Published June 5, 2021, 11:34 AM

by Punch Liwanag

John Mayer premiered a new music video for his new single “Last Train Home,” Friday.

The new song is the first track off his upcoming new album titled “Sob Rock.”  

On this mid-tempo pop rock song, the prominent keyboard and first-gen style electronic drum sound definitely borrows from the ’80s.

It has Mayer effortlessly churning out guitar lines from viscous to cutting, recalling late ’80s-era Eric Clapton and even Peter Gabriel, if not for Mayer’s all too recognizable vocals.  

The feel and look of the 80’s also extends to Mayer’s visuals.

From album artwork, to the way his social media posts look and even Mayer’s current styling: from his big hair, to light colored denim jackets and baggy pants.

In the music video, there’s a stark image of the 43-year-old singer-songwriter playing his acoustic guitar in an empty ballroom, perhaps as a nod to the still ongoing pandemic.

But the music video also affirms the slow and sure re-opening of music venues (and the world) as Mayer is seen playing with his new band right at the onset as if rehearsing, and his road crew gearing up for a show.  Or, you know, we could just be reading too much into it when actually, the director simply thought it’d be nice and realistic to have a band-playing-together scene built into the video.

Country singer Marren Morris is also featured on the track and is seen as well on the video.

“Sob Rock” will be released on July 17.

It will be John Mayer’s eight album and his first since 2017’s “The Search For Everything.”  

Grammy awarded DJ and producer Calvin Harris likewise released a new single and an accompanying lyric video Friday titled “By Your Side.”

The “We Found Love” DJ (who popularized the track with Rihanna) has collaborated with British pop singer-songwriter and guitarist Tom Grennan.

“By Your Side” hears Grennan singing “atop infectious beats and sticky pop hooks with assuring words of love and affection,” goes the track’s official description and adds, “It’s an electronic dance anthem that helps listeners get through the most trying of times.

The Calvin Harris-Tom Grennan collab track is just in time for summer 2021 wherein things will hopefully start to open up as vaccination efforts step up.

Both artists are hopeful that their song will soundtrack a much brighter and more positive summer.

Harris said of Grennan: “Thank you for blessing this tune with your unbelievable voice. I absolutely love a summer record.”

Grennan for his part is reciprocating the positivity.

“Just here thinking ‘By Your Side’ with Calvin Harris is out on Friday. My birthday is next week and the sun is out. Life is good and I’m feeling very lucky.” 

 
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