Maroon 5


222 Records/Interscope Records

Maroon 5 are a band that I have followed since the beginning with their hit ‘Harder to Breathe’. They are impressive live and have now released their fifth album ‘V’ (probably not the most original album title but they are not the first act to have a bad title and they won’t be the last so I can forgive them). The album is full of radio-friendly singles such as ‘Maps’ which opens this eleven track album and lets the listener know that Maroon 5 is back on form after their questionable release ‘Overexposed’ in 2012.

‘Animals’ has the same creepy vibe you’d associate with The Police’s ‘Every Breath You Take’ but it fits the song perfectly whilst ‘Unkiss Me’ is thoroughly depressing in comparison. ‘Sugar’ has dominated the airwaves at the moment and that’s quite alright as it makes you want to dance, sing and just have fun. In addition, the music video is extremely original and exciting. I won’t spoil it but go on YouTube and enjoy.

The overall sound is very rich and fuller because Maroon 5 is now a six-piece with Adam Levine providing lead vocals and guitar, James Valentine on guitar, Mickey Madden playing bass, Matt Flynn on the drums and Jesse Carmichael and PJ Morton both on keyboards.

‘Leaving California’ feels like a song that the band Fun didn’t use and ‘In Your Pocket’ is a lively tune about a partner keeping secrets but the line ‘show me yours I’ll show you mine’ is genius. ‘New Love’ is annoying as Levine has a case of ‘chorus hiccups’ and the only other recorded case I’ve ever come across is ‘Friday Night’ by The Shires. Best get Adam a glass of water just to be safe.

‘Feelings’ is a club dancefloor hit and can probably become as big as ‘I Know You Like It’ by Enrique Iglesias and Pitbull. Closing track ‘My Heart is Open’ features US The Voice judge Gwen Stefani and it is essentially a duet with piano. It is quite a sad track but Stefani’s vocals are stunning and it is quite pleasant in an album which is very electronic.

The album is lyrically strong and the musicians know what they are doing which is why they will be playing two shows at Wembley Arena in May. With Maroon 5, males and females are able to sing along with Adam Levine thus making them universally popular and successful. I hope they continue on this musical route and don’t divert to any payphones again.

Glenn Sargeant