Maroon 5 - Hands All Over
There are few mainstream pop acts out there who can match the level of radio ready pop output that Maroon 5 offers. While 2002’s Songs About Jane unleashed the band’s brand of funky hooked melodies and Adam Levine’s oboe like tenor to major chart topping success, 2007’s It Won’t Be Soon Before Long, a more mature, slicker effort failed to reach the same heights. On their latest, Hands All Over, the hiring of Mutt Lange as producer, the man credited with giving acts as diverse as Def Leppard and Shania Twain mega-smashes, appears to be a move clearly aimed at achieving the glory of their debut release.
And there’s more than enough radio welcoming material on Hands All Over to keep the airwaves primed and sales flowing. ‘Misery’ and ‘Stutter’ with their intensively repeated rhythmic hooks on funk beats are clearly pulled from the same recipe book as big hits ‘This Love’ and ‘Harder To Breathe’. ‘Give A Little More’ and ‘Get Back In My Life’ follow the same formula even if they seem to emanate more from early ‘80s disco-funk. But title track breaks the mold and makes Lange’s input evident. While maintaining the base components of the band’s sound, Lange successfully sends the band into full crowd chanting, fist pumping power pop territory. But if the title track suggests that Maroon 5 might succeed in being a bit more experimental, the lifeless country take on ‘Out Of Goodbyes,’ with harmonies by Lady Antebellum, proves they mightn’t want to stray far.
It’s hard to picture Maroon 5 ten years from now. Their music is the type that tends to be defined by a period in music, and Hands All Over leaves little to believe that they will venture far outside their comfort zone. When Levine pines, “No, it is perfect, so I stay, I’m never gonna leave this bed,” that pretty much sums it up.
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