:: Maroon 5 :: Fillmore Auditorium :: Oct. 29 & 30 :: (note: show relocated from Pepsi Center)
By Tiffany Childs
Waiting four years to release a sophomore record in an industry that has a notoriously short attention span may seem like a big gamble for most bands. Maroon 5, on the other hand, wasn’t worried about it at all. And it seems they had no reason to. Their newest release, It Won’t Be Soon Before Long, hit the charts running – their first single set records on the Billboard charts by jumping 63 slots to #1 — the largest jump in the charts’ 49 years.
Beyond that success, Maroon 5 has also seen their single take iTunes’ top spot in audio and video downloads as well as having pre-sale orders reach #1 on the iTunes album download sales chart. With all of this success one has to wonder if the Grammy-winning quintet is setting itself up for a repeat performance.
In a recent interview with The Marquee, Adam Levine (vocals/guitar) and James Valentine (guitar) spoke about their thoughts on the album’s success and the tour supporting it.
“I think it’s because we just take a very classic approach to song craft and I think that’s sort of lacking in a lot of music today,” Valentine told The Marquee.
As it turns out, most of the craft for this album was done by Levine himself. “You know, I think it was just the way it happened. There was no self-conscious effort on my part to separate myself from anybody. It was just, we had this house and it was basically just a stomping ground to be creative in. All of the melodies and lyrics come from me for the first record. The chord progressions and the arrangements were where a lot of the collaborations took place, so nothing changed drastically,” Levine told The Marquee.
It Won’t Be Soon Before Long sees quite a bit of change from Maroon 5’s previous release, Songs About Jane. Most notably is a more upbeat tempo. Valentine remarked the difference was intentional. “The only conscious thing that we really went into the studio thinking was that we definitely wanted some more up-tempo songs because we felt that our set lacked that. All the songs on Songs About Jane are kind of mid-tempo or they’re lower in the beats-per-minute range, and so we did want a couple more up-tempo songs to accent the set,” Valentine said.
While listeners may agree that “Make Me Wonder,” the first single released, is more upbeat, Levine told us the second single is going to be “Won’t Go Home Without You” — which will bring the tempo down to familiar territory again for old fans.
Maroon 5 kicked off yet another tour at the end of September to support the album, hitting 28 North American cities in just over a month. Something the band is excited about is the “green” aspect of this tour. “A dollar from each ticket sold will go to Global Cool to make the entire experience green to neutralize our footprint. We personally are using bio-diesel in the buses. There are a lot of limitations, but it’s going to be the greenest tour it can be. And that’s all we can strive for,” Valentine said.
Opening up for Maroon 5 is The Hives, which some people see as an unusual choice to say the least. However, Levine professed his love for The Hives and their music. “They’re a great band and we wanted to get a really good, energetic, amazing live act. I think they’re best suited for playing live and that’s what the show’s about, so we wanted to get the best one out there,” he said.
And perhaps an even better reason came from Valentine: “It’s going to raise the bar for us every night because they’re going to be really tough to follow. So I think it will force us to step up and bring our A game.”
As a band who has seen so much of the road, Maroon 5 certainly is experienced at knowing what a concert-going crowd wants from them, and they know that cover songs are a big part of that. “Yes, we’re sort of known for playing cover songs and it was because we had no choice on the first tour,” Valentine said. “We only had one album’s worth of material, so we had to start throwing in some other people’s songs. Now, we’re just excited that we have enough songs to make a set of our own music.”
And Valentine told The Marquee that much of that will be centered around the new material and less on show production. “We don’t want there to be too many bells and whistles because we don’t want to detract from the music,” he said.
With the latest record full of beats that hit a little harder and faster tempos, there’s little doubt that the music will be the audience’s focus.
:: Maroon 5 ::
:: Fillmore Auditorium :: Oct. 29 & 30 ::
(note: show relocated from Pepsi Center)
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