on December 7, 2003
SONGS ABOUT JANE is sure to become a classic pop/rock album.Released way back in the summer of 2002 its about time fans and radio stations alike have finally taken notice to this great album. The first single HARDER TO BREATHE, was just a tip of the iceberg and if you like variety, you have found the right album. The second single, THIS LOVE, blends pop, with rock and dance and is a song that you cant help singing and dancing along with. There are also ballads to choose from as well and I would look for either MUST GET OUT or SHE WILL BE LOVED to be possible single choices sometime in the near future.
Other standout tracks on the album include SUNDAY MORNING, THROUGH WITH YOU & THE SUN with each track on the album sounding distinctly differant.
There are definate R & B/funk influences all over this album and will all of the rap songs and R & B ballads taking over the pop charts these days, it is very refreshing to hear a group like Maroon 5 and songs like HARDER TO BREATHE and THIS LOVE getting significant play at radio.
Buy this album today and be prepared to sing and dance all day and make sure you catch them live when they come to a town near you.
on April 13, 2003
Maroon 5 brings to us a brilliant mix of soul, rock, funk, and R&B so slickly crafted that most people won�t know how to take them. The intense vocal range of frontman Adam Levine is matched perfectly by this incredibly smooth band. Dueling guitars, jazzy keys, and a rhythm section cooler than Barry White in the late 70�s bring this massive sound to a head.
The harmonies brought forth on this disc bear an uncanny resemblance to Michael Jackson, though the utter lack of synth-pop backing, creates a sound all its own. The album, Songs About Jane, is clearly devoted primarily the relationships and love-life of Levine, who is also the bands main songwriter. Probably the most outright pop tune on the album would be �She Will be Loved,� which happens to tell the most interesting story lyrically. This track is apparently about the singer�s infatuation and empathy toward an attractive young prostitute, who he visits frequently in an attempt to make her feel as beautiful as she is.
It is difficult to pick out standout tracks on an album like this, where every song is so equally fantastic. The...funk-tastic tune �Not Coming Home,� along with the slowed down lounge groove, �Secret,� are 2 of my personal favorites, although every song on here has strength alone. The first single, which to this point has only received minimal notice and success, �Harder to Breathe,� is clearly the most �alternative� of the album. �Sweetest Goodbye� is also a great way to wrap this album up and leave the listener smiling from this R&B tinged love song.
Overall, this may be one of the best albums of 2002. The talent for writing great pop tunes that stray from the synth-pop and electronic influences of current radio mainstays may make this album great, but I can imagine the difficulty in marketing a band like this to mainstream audiences who fight tooth and nail to place everything in categories and genres. If you really want a great band to chill and relax to, but one that never falls into the category of �background music� then Maroon 5 is for you. And if you�re a woman, age 18-30 and you�re single, check out Maroon 5 live, because from listening to Mr. Levine�s lyrics, I can tell you one thing � this guy LOVES women.
on January 21, 2003
What can I say but this is an AMAZING CD. I first saw Maroon 5 on "Last Call with Carson Daly" on NBC last September 2002. I was replaying a tape I had made of the previous night's show to watch when I came home from work. (I can never stay up late enough to watch the original broadcasts).
It was near the end of the show, and Carson had spent most of the program interviewing some actress (Parker Posey or Piper Perabu -- someone with a lot of 'P's in their name) and I got up to get some food. I was half way to the kitchen and I started hearing this unbelievably funky music coming out of my TV.
I ran back to my set, and I couldn't believe my eyes. There were five white guys playing the most soulful, funky music I've heard in a L-O-N-G time. Maroon 5 played their first single, "Harder to Breathe". I was impressed enough to save their performance on tape instead of taping over it with the next night's show.
I'm an R&B fan mostly, and I have a pretty good knowledge of most soul and R&B music. I know there hasn't been an R&B or soul band on the charts since Toni, Tony, Tone (Raphael Sadiq) called it quits in 1996. Maroon 5 is a unique combination of soul, funk and rock music. The closest comparison I can come up with is the Red Hot Chilli Peppers, and as much as I like the Chilli Peppers, I think that Maroon 5's lead singer, Adam Levine, has a voice with more range than Anthony Kiedis of the Chilli Peppers.
I made a mental note to myself to check out their CD the next time I had a chance, and when I was at Borders a few days later, I sampled selections from their CD, "Songs About Jane". You know you have a keeper when you don't even skip over tracks when you're sampling the CD in a record store. I bought the CD right there, played the CD in my car the rest of that day, and it has been in heavy rotation in my CD changer ever since.
I also caught Maroon 5 live opening for O.A.R. at the House of Blues in L.A. last November 2002. I was totally blown away. They are a phenomenal live band -- raw, hot, sexy, full of kinetic energy.
Since then, I learned that 4 out of 5 of the members of Maroon 5 are from right here in L.A.(my home). They have got to be L.A.'s best kept secret. When I look at the stuff that's on the charts right now, I don't see any bands that even come close to what they are doing, which explains why they haven't broken out yet. But it will happen, believe me it will happen. Real SOON.
I just bought tickets to see them perform as a headliner this time at the House of Blues on January 27, 2003 and I know they are going to set that stage on fire.
Even John Mayer (grammy nominee), who Maroon 5 supported on part of his last tour, is singing their praises. In an ad for their upcoming House of Blues shows, he is quoted as saying the following about Maroon 5: "The perfect blend of melody & grit. One of the best bands to come along in a while."
If you like funk/rock or rock/soul music -- heck if you like music that has a fantastic melody, and lyrics that complement the music perfectly, you will love this CD.
Don't sleep on this one! You will be sorry you did.
on January 6, 2005
Okay, not everyone will agree with me when I call this 'pop', but personally I think Maroon 5 is just about the best pop music around at the moment.
As for the extra tracks on this 'Asian' version... 3 out of the 4 aren't special. The acoustic versions of "Harder to Breathe" and "She Will be Loved" appear to be lifted straight from the acoustic 1.22.03 EP (that's the recording date given for both). They're pleasant enough but not a match for the studio versions. The Kanye West remix of "This Love" strikes me as pretty average, but I'm not a fan of remixes generally and may be biased.
The REAL bonus here is "Rag Doll", a bluesy song over 5 minutes long that is every bit as good as the main album. If you're thinking of buying the album anyway, this track is the reason to give serious consideration to getting the 16-track version.
on March 26, 2004
Maroon 5 emerged onto the college scene in 1999 as Kara's Flowers. After their first release on Reprise Records, (The Fourth World), they were dropped by the label. They subsequently fine-tuned their unique sound and were signed by Octone Records (an indie division of J-Records/Clive Davis) in 2002. That same year, Songs About Jane was released. It is a worthy project from a group of talented artists that defies categorization fusing a mixture of genres into a finely tuned work of modern art. The now platinum status of this CD is evidence of the group's hard work and burgeoning mass appeal. Stand out tracks are the 2003 hit Harder to Breathe and the current top ten hit This Love. She Will Be Loved is a slower yet just as appealing mellow tune that adds to the diversity of this disc. Tangled and The Sun will help you get your funk on while Sunday Morning is a fun, hip tune that will have you singing along. The key to this CD's success is the diversity of musical styles. It never leaves one with a bland feeling, constantly surprising the listener with a mixture of Rock, Soul, Funk and R&B. A musical delight from beginning to end, Maroon 5 should have a bright future.
on December 9, 2002
Maroon 5 was on Last Call with Carson Daly a few weeks ago, and at that point, I had never heard of them. When they came on, the only thought in my mind was how much the lead singer looks like the lead singer of Train. But then they started playing, and they were a mix of old-school funk, new age rock, and a little Rx Bandits, being that it seems like every instrument in the band has the "leading the band" feel. It's a very dominant band, and an even more dominant CD. The effects are used at the right time, and the songs are some of the most well-written songs I've ever heard under or above ground. Maroon 5 may be too soft for some people... But if you truly want to hear great music that you really don't hear everyday, check out Maroon 5. I'll be looking for them on tour...
on February 25, 2004
SONGS ABOUT JANE is a great album and the extra track on this import is a GREAT SONG. It is a piano based ballad. However you can save a lot of money and get more for your money by simply buying the regular version of SONGS ABOUT JANE along with the HARDER TO BREATHE SINGLE.
The single includes RAGDOLL along with the video of HARDER TO BREATHE.
So for about 15 less dollars you can have all of the songs on this album plus the video of their first single by simply buying the American version of SONGS ABOUT JANE and the SINGLE for HARDER TO BREATHE
on May 14, 2004
Like a good coffee or a good painting, this album is seamlessly blended. From funky singles like "Harder to Breathe" to the vocally challenging "Tangled", which sounds like it has subtle shades of classical flavor to it, to the jazzy "Sunday Morning" featuring piano and sax, it manages to be simultaneously modern and hip, while maintaining a certain timelessness by tipping a hat to old musical genres. It samples and mixes many different kinds of music while retaining one unique style throughout, making for a pop album that's sweet without making you gag.
Lead singer Adam Levin's voice is flexible, stylish and sort of sexy, and the lyrics sprinkled with sexual references, from the subtlest innuendo to the blatantly scarlet. The songs are about women and relationships at their best and worst, their charm and their mystery. There may be a Jane out there somewhere with an album about her, but it's more likely that "Jane" is all the different women in his life, each with a song about her unique situation. Every song is catchy, each with a great melody in its own right, and very enjoyable to listen to. It's one of those rare CDs where you never find yourself skipping past a song you don't like.
on July 2, 2002
Songs About Jane by Maroon5 is one of the best CD's I've bought in years. I keep playing the songs and keep finding new dimensions to the music. Singer/song writer Adam Levine is destined for stardom. His voice, his lyrics and his guitar playing are incredible. Maroon 5 is a band with undeniable talent and this Octone Record CD is 12 great songs right down the line. If you've ever been in love and lost this album is for you.
Marron5 is a blend of R&B funk with power pop, think Stevie Wonder, Michael Jackson, and guitar riffs that Stevie Ray would dig and you've got this all white band from LA. Go figure. Somehow these young guys have gotten a soul infusion and result is a break through album with major musicianship on every instrument. It's called talent and everything about this CD is original, and that's what I like about them. Show me something new and they do. And as good as the CD is, they are much better live. Get on the Maroon 5 bandwagon now because this album establishes them as a major new act on the rock and roll landscape.
on July 3, 2005
Hello, I am twelve years old and I am a big fan of Maroon 5. This is their debut release with 11 studio tracks and 1 live track. Except the one you are looking at here is a special edition with bonus tracks. It includes the previously unreleased song, Ragdoll, which I think is either an outtake or an alt. take for Sunday Morning. This special edition also includes the acoustic versions for Harder To Breathe and This Love. They are both live somewhere, and they were originally on the acoustic album they came out last year in 2004. There is also a remix by the rappers known as Kanye West for This Love which is the final bonus track. These are all pretty good, but I think it would've been better if they also included the b-side called Woman from the Spider-Man 2 soundtrack, but they couldn't because it came out before the Spider-Man 2 sountrack was released.
Now for the main album, which I believe is very nice with funk and a little softer rock mixed together. I'm not referring to anything like the Red Hot Chili Peppers. No, these guys are different than that kind of funk. It's definitely not 80's funk either. It is actually the new funk that came out somewhere in 1999 or 2000. This funk is sort of rock, and it's hard to explain. Some people might consider this kind of funk made with blues, funk rock, and acoustic punk mixed together. If you listen to those samples, you'll know what I'm getting at. All 5 members of this band agreed to make this kind of music, and I think it was an extremely good agreement and that was what was happening as they were making their to the top.
So, when you first turn on your CD player, the first track you here is Harder to Breathe. You hear drums pounding as it goes up into the serious rock and the singer sings his somewhat agitated vocals as he seems to be upset with someone, but not like Slipknot, this is far from that it's a lot softer. Then after that we go on to This Love, which is definitely one of the best or is the best track on the album. It is a radio hit like any song on this album, but it is extremely big and was I beieve the top fifth song of 2004. Then after that we go onto Shiver, which is one of my favorites. It has a nice chorus, and most members of the bands sing this together. This isn't as well-known as most of the songs on this album, but I think it is well-titled, the name of the song represents it pretty well. Then after that we move on the top song of 2004, She Will Be Loved. This is played on the radio all of the time almost, and it is extremely good. It's about this guy and he has trouble with which he wants to be with but then he makes the right choice and chooses the lonely one. Anyway, after that we move on to the song Tangled, which the music sounds like something that would be good for a video game. The vocals are very serious in this, which breaks my video game thought. This is one of those tracks on this album that isn't quite a hit but it well-recognized. After that we move on the song Sun, which I think is a little soft and not fit for me. It is not my favorite on the album, it just doesn't have enough noise. Listen to it and see for yourself.
Take a break as move on to the second half of the album...Now we're going to the track Must Get Out, and same things for this track as Sun. I just didn't really prefer, but these are about the only two songs that aren't very cool on the entire album. After that, there's the song Sunday Morning, which is my favorite. There's piano and the singer's brilliant voice, and the chorus is a little weird but it's nothing you should care about. It's just a good song and one of the popular ones on the album. Next is the song Secret, with a boring intro but the song gets really good. Everyone hates the intro to this song, and so I do. If you absolutely can't stand it, then fast forward it. After that is the song Through With You, which is intense. It's hard to figure out if the guy is through with her, or if he's been through with her for a long time. Or if he's had a great experience with her. I couldn't get it but it's an ok song. The second to the last song of the CD is not a studio track but a live one. I really wished they had record a studio version, but the quality isn't that bad live either. The name is Not Coming Home, and it's a great song. Also you learn the singer's voice naturally sounds like that and he doesn't use advanced studio machinery to do it. Finally we have Sweetest Goodbye which is a nice ending song. It's nice with a catchy tune, and it's so sincere it actually sounds like the band is saying goodbye to you. This song really got me liking it, and it's one of the main reasons to buy this.
Overall Grade: 9/10
Overall Opinion: A nice CD, but I lowered it one point because of the two songs I didn't care much for, and the other ten are superb and the bonus tracks are cool with one unreleased track two acoustic tracks and one remix. Almost perfect!