Maroon 5 releases mediocre album, fails to maintain former sound

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In their fifth full-length release, Maroon 5 is staying true to their style; crisp, yet versatile. The mixture of electronic and acoustic sounds blend naturally with subtle harmonization and lead vocalist Adam Levine’s distinctive tenor. The album has a wide range of themes, spanning from the Phil Collins-like “It Was Always You” in reflection of Levine’s recent marriage, to the classic cheating tale of “In Your Pocket”. They keep things interesting too with a soulful duet featuring Gwen Stefani in “My Heart Is Open”. There are a few weak spots, such as Levine’s lack of emotional presence in a select few songs; however, as a whole, the album seems to flow well in a respectable style. To say that the group was at the peak of their potential would be a huge overstatement; their earlier albums such as “Songs About Jane” held a deeper complexity musically and tended to lean toward the California coastal soul sound. “V” is definitely worth a listen if you’re a fan, and even if you’re not, it’s still a fun album that will do very well on the charts.

Rating: ★★★★☆

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