Maroon 5 are like Marmite, you either dislike them or you absolutely love them, and for those in the latter camp front man Adam Levine and company’s seventh studio album is business as usual, but is reliant upon a number of songwriters, producers, plus guest artists to inject personality into it.

Entitled Jordi, so called after a nickname of the band’s manager and Levine’s childhood friend, Jordan Feldstein, who died of a heart attack aged 40 in December 2017, this latest release tries to appeal to as many demographics as possible.

Kicking off with the rising rapper Megan Thee Stallion, the first single from the album, Beautiful Mistakes showcases warm guitar strums and Levine’s soft pop vocals. Whilst Stallion’s presence in the song isn’t forced, the inclusion of lively instruments does sometimes subdue her a little.

Up next is the forth single to be released from the album; Lost, which sees Levine appearing to imitate Billie Eilish’s style of song writing and production which works really well and is one of the album’s highlights.

Stevie Nicks joins the band on Remedy but she seems to offer just a back-up presence. They deny Nicks her chance to add personality by auto-tuning her into oblivion but the result is an acceptable song.

Echo features Blackbear, just one of a bulging guest list, which includes Zimbabwean pop artist Bantu who brings the Afrobeat melody to the table on One Light, which keeps Levine’s melancholy singing from entirely bringing down the mood of the song. Whilst it does blend certain elements of pop music, it sounds very different from what one would expect from a Maroon 5 project.

Convince Me Otherwise features contemporary R & B singer H.E.R creating a completely unexpected tone in the middle of the album. Seemingly to be a back and forth argument between a couple, the predictable hooks helps build the song but H.E.R lifts it with her beautiful soothing vocals.

Their second single Nobody’s Love was inspired by the pandemic and the George Floyd protests and is one of the more heartfelt songs on the album. There are also posthumous verses from the late rapper Juice WRLD in Can’t Leave You Alone which speaks about a love interest.

Memories, the first single to be released is dedicated to Feldstein and speaks about loss. The Memories remix features the late rapper Nipsey Hussle and YG and is an upbeat end to this album.

With the involvement of forty nine writers, seven of whom were involved in the construction of Memories, the tone of each song jumps from one to another, making it an almost unpredictable album to listen to. And despite this army of A list writers and producers, there isn’t anything on this album to rival the inescapable punch of Sugar or Moves Like Jaggar. The songs are there to be listened to and in the end Jordi isn’t a bad album. It’s just not a great one.

Our Rating: 2 out of 5 stars (2 / 5)

Number of tracks: 12

Running time: 37:45

Released on: 222, Interscope, Polydor Records

Release date: 11th June 2021

Formats: CD/Cassette/MP3

To purchase: https://maroon5shop.com

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