Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Hands Up

It's been pretty well documented on this site that when it comes to music, I'm no expert. However, like any fan, I know what makes my ears happy, and this week it's Maroon 5's new album, Hands All Over. I was able to download the album more than a week ago, and have had it on constant "rotation" nearly ever since. Notable about the album — other than its provocative cover — is that while the band's funk/rock sound is still present, it's almost overtaken by a more overt pop sensibility that results in Maroon 5's most enjoyable studio album yet.

If you listen to top 40 radio, then you no doubt have already heard first single "Misery," which, along with second single "Give a Little More," are the type of Maroon 5 songs fans know and love. "Don't Know Nothing" and "I Can't Lie," however, have a very different, almost 60s-ish pop sound (the latter is reminiscent of the song "Everybody Plays the Fool"). "Stutter" may be heavier on the funk side, but its hook is decidedly pop. Fans of earlier hits like "She Will Be Loved" will enjoy the slowed-down pace of "Just a Feeling" and "Out of Goodbyes," the latter of which features current country/pop crossover Lady Antebellum. And the yearning "How," currently my favorite track on the album, is just one of a handful of songs with a piano-driven rhythm.

There are other tracks that will take some time to grow on me, but overall, Hands All Over is a pleasing effort from Adam Levine and co. I suspect it'll stay on my featured playlist for some time to come.



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