Album: Mayer Hawthorne – A Strange Arrangement

mayer-hawthorne-strange-arrangement-2Modern day smooth operator Mayer Hawthorne has made a striking impression with this distinct and energetic debut. It harps back to the golden days of soul and silky smooth love songs that make the female population’s knees tremble.

Mayer Hawthorne’s (a.k.a Andrew Mayer Cohen) appearance is quite throwing as his voice is more suited to that of a 70’s stud muffin like Leroy Hutson. This side of Mayer Hawthorne is seen in ‘Shiny & New’ most suitably, you can practically hear the bedroom eyes in amongst the crooning and strings.

Mayer not only embraces the fairer sex but also rebuffs a particularly stale relationship in ‘Just Ain‘t Gonna Work Out’. It certainly saddens the heart, lines like ‘I know that you were hearing wedding bells/But, I’m sorry/‘Cos it just ain’t working out’ are torture to the romantic in this reviewer.

Mayer Hawthorne is no stranger to heartbreak himself from the sounds of ‘I Wish It Would Rain’. Admittedly, the song has a touch of rom-com cheese, but this only adds to its appeal. Once again, it reminds of the simpler days of song-writing when lyrics weren’t so high-brow as to confuddle the listener into an ignorant bliss, and instead expresses a very basic yearning for a cover up for quite un-masculine tendencies.

Following track, ‘Make Her Mine’ quickly shakes the notion of heartbreak out of mind. A determined plea for requited love, it brings visions of sunlit walks and candlelit meals to mind, a far cry from any Saturday night in Britain’s cities for sure.

If any ordinary man tried out the lines Mayer Hawthorne throws out on this LP, he’d probably find himself lying on the floor looking up at some very angry ladies retreating quickly into the night. But because these lines are laden with the heydays of soul and Mayer Hawthorne‘s velvet vocals, it works in an extremely peculiar fashion.

Words: Mary Machin