Gavin DeGraw has had a very consistent career so far, landing in the top 20 of the Billboard charts since his self-titled album in 2008, and a very consistent sound and style in his most recent years, mixing pop and soul elements to create something that fits his strong, warm vocals. It shouldn’t be surprising, then, to say that Something Worth Saving is a pretty familiar album for DeGraw, and one that unfortunately doesn’t stand out that much.
As you’d expect, Something Worth Saving is fuelled by DeGraw’s soulful pop sound, opening with the bright, upbeat happiness of She Sets the City on Fire that feels simple and opens the album on a strong note that feels very reminiscent of previous DeGraw music. Opening the song on this album helps to highlight the continued familiarity of the tracklist; it has the usual downward flow from the incredibly bright She Sets The City On Fire with the mood slowly dropping until we reach the pop ballad Harder To Believe and actual ballad Say I Am halfway through, with none of the tracks really standing out with any real personality of their own.
Things get a little better with the heavier rock influence of How Lucky Can a Man Get directly after this point, however, and the more modernised pop of New Love feels much more enjoyable than the album’s first half as well, taking on a more urban twist than a soulful one. Annalee works similarly well as the penultimate track, taking on a retro twist that feels familiar in a motown sort of way, but slots well into this section of the album. The fact that the three majorly memorable tracks on Something Worth Saving are buried at the tail end of the album is somewhat troublesome, and makes the first half of the album decidedly more difficult to listen to, and less pleasant to remember in comparison.
However, it’s not a major downgrade from anything he’s done before, and those that seek out DeGraw for this familiar style will come out happy with the result after listening to the album. It may be paced a little too familiarly in its first half and somewhat haphazardly after that, but as a complete entity Something Worth Saving is a decent addition to DeGraw’s discography.