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Maroon 5 and frontman Adam Levine are certainly not complaining about overexposure. The California rockers became ubiquitous last year with their worldwide smash “Moves Like Jagger,” featuring Christina Aguilera, and Levine’s prime-time presence as a judge on The Voice. Now the band is embracing its new pop-centric profile. “We’ve decided to stay on that path,” says Levine. “We tapped into something really special.”
Maroon 5’s fourth studio album abandons the last vestiges of the group’s soft-rock past in favor of an unabashedly dance-friendly sound. Working with hitmakers like Britney Spears songwriter Max Martin, the band follows the “Jagger” grooves with songs like “Lucky Strike,” “Doin’ Dirt” and “The Man Who Never Lied.” The high-energy approach is working: the track “Payphone,” which blends Levine’s falsetto vocals with Wiz Khalifa’s rapid-fire rap, is already a major hit. Despite one token piano ballad, the bittersweet “Sad,” Maroon 5’s latest moves are decidedly and irresistibly upbeat.