Listen Up: John Mayer, Haley Reinhart, more
This week in music
By Steve Jones, Brian Mansfield and Edna Gundersen, USA TODAYMay 21, 2012
Kimbra, who had already made a good impression on Gotye's hit Somebody That I Used to Know, proves that she's much more than just another pop voice. On Vows, she mixes and matches vocal styles over a broad and shifting array of sonic flavors. She effortlessly blends everything from throwback soul to indie rock to urban funk.
Last season on American Idol, Haley Reinhart struggled to find suitable material for the swoops and slides of her free-wheeling, bluesy vocal style. That's not so on Listen Up!, a vivacious bit of post-Adele neo-soul. From reverb-drenched Oh My! to Motown-influenced gems like Wasted Tears and Wonderland, Reinhart has grooves that should thrill her fans from the show.
MercyMe has long been one of Christian music's top acts, a middle-of-the-road rock act getting by on decent tunes and honorable lyrics. Frontman Bart Millard's totally in awe that he's on the radar of a God he can't fully comprehend. A duet with NEEDTOBREATHE's Bear Rinehart on Take the Time adds needed grit to otherwise positive-minded pop less challenging than its theology.
Catch up on recent music reviews you might have missed the first time around.