Jason Mraz is living “full spiral”—not full circle, exactly, because he and his experiences are ever growing—on his eighth studio album, Mystical Magical Rhythmical Radical Ride, where the musician finds himself returning to a familiar junction in space. Across the collection, there are hints of Mraz’s formative releases, including 2002’s debut Waiting for My Rocket to Come and 2005’s Mr. A-Z, but ultimately a very close kinship to 2008’s We Sing. We Dance. We Steal Things. The new, unabashedly pop songs see Mraz reuniting with numerous collaborators, like the LA band Raining Jane and 2008 production helmsman Martin Terefe, as well as grappling with the emotions and experiences of mid-life, a time often ignored by pop songwriters. Its optimistic, inspiring sensibility reflects the musician’s overall approach to being in the world. It is, in fact, full spiral—reflecting the past but becoming something new.
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