Mixed feelings....Can't stop thinking he's Tracy Chapman
I have strongly mixed feelings about both Mraz and this album. I constantly flip flop between liking him and not. He's clearly one of the hardest working musicians out there and i respect that, but it's easy to hear too much of him. I tend to hit my Mraz limit pretty quick - long before a full LP can play through (This one included). Put one of his albums on and it gets old fast.
He's kind've a musical polyglot in that he's always mixing several different genres of music. As with everything about him, I like some of his styles and dislike others. His summery tunes and many of his more rappy songs tend to be his best. This one is not quite as rappy as his previous albums, but it does seem to have his heaviest doses of breezy/summery songs and they are by far the strongest on this album. I was drawn in when i saw Colbie would be on one of the tracks. I knew that would be a sure summery tune and you can't go wrong with Colbie. Because of the several strong summery songs, despite the low overall rating, I would venture to say that this album is stil his best to date.
Many songs in his catalog and on this album, however, tend to be more of a blend of R&B and/or Funk tunes. These are usually the weaker Mraz songs and drag down every single one of his albums.
I also have mixed feelings about his vocals. 90% of the time when he comes on randomly, I'm convinced he's Tracy Chapman. And when Tracy Chapman comes on, I'm convinced it's Jason Mraz. They sound exactly the same. He sings kinda feminine and she's sings kinda masculine. This has always been my biggest pet peeve with Mraz. There are moments on this album, however, that I like his singing and he almost comes off a little like Michael Buble at moments.
Finally, I have mixed feelings about his lyrics. Many of these songs sound pleasant or even good, but the lyrics are either silly, cheap/empty or just plain weak. Live High, in particular, was one of the more painful ones to sit through. I enjoyed the sound, but wanted to scream at the cheesy lyrics. In general, if the song isn't one of his hits, it's going to be a throwaway more often than not.
The stats are, once again, a mixed bag on this album. The first three songs are solid, but it's spotty at best after that. The biggest thing affecting the overall rating of this album is the fact that more than half of the songs are throwaways. There's 0 five star songs, 1 four star song in I'm Yours, 3 three star songs, 1 two star song and the rest were throwaways. He's never been a "download every song" kind of artist.