Animals (Maroon 5 song)

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"Animals"
Maroon 5 - Animals Single Cover.png
Single by Maroon 5
from the album V
Released August 25, 2014 (2014-08-25)
Format
Recorded
Length 3:51
Label Interscope
Songwriter(s)
Producer(s) Shellback
Maroon 5 singles chronology
"Maps"
(2014)
"Animals"
(2014)
"Sugar"
(2015)
"Maps"
(2014)
"Animals"
(2014)
"Sugar"
(2015)
Music video
"Animals" on YouTube

"Animals" is a song by American pop rock band Maroon 5. It was released on August 25, 2014 as the second official single from the band's fifth studio album, V, it was written by Adam Levine, Benny Blanco and Shellback; the latter is also the producer. The official Remix features J. Cole and another remix features Big Boi, both written and produced by Freaky Ta, DCBC, and Aftermath artist Me3mo (Sameem Nadeem).

The lyric video for the song was released on August 22, 2014 on Vevo.[1] A snippet of "Animals" was featured in a Kia Soul commercial, published on August 21, 2014,[2] for a limited time after the commercial premiered, the song was available for free download on the official Kia website.[3] The song peaked at number three on the US Billboard Hot 100 giving Maroon 5 their tenth top 10 single in the U.S.

Critical reception[edit]

Rolling Stone ranked "Animals" at number 32 on its year-end list of the 50 best songs of 2014.[4]

Music video[edit]

The music video, directed by Samuel Bayer (who previously worked with the band on the clip for their 2012 single "Payphone") was released on September 29, 2014, it mainly features Adam Levine and his wife, Behati Prinsloo. The other musicians of Maroon 5 (including their touring member, Sam Farrar, who appeared in a music video of the band for the very first time) also make an appearance - they are seen playing at a nightclub in some scenes of the video.

The video starts with a woman (played by Prinsloo) entering a slaughterhouse, where Levine's character works, after she leaves, an infatuated Levine begins to stalk the woman by following her in the streets and standing outside her apartment in the pouring rain to watch her. He also watches the woman in her sleep and takes numerous photos of Prinsloo which he later trims and places on wires around a dark room. Intercut with this are scenes of a shirtless Levine dripping in fake blood, singing the song inside a meat locker and using animal carcasses for punching bags (referencing to Rocky). One evening, Levine follows the woman into a nightclub, where he tries to talk to her. Though Prinsloo is amused by Levine and his interest in her, she spends the evening talking to her girlfriends instead. Eventually, Levine is left with no luck, so he goes back to fantasizing about the girl, after an erotic dream, Levine wakes up in a shock and returns to stalking Prinsloo by standing outside her apartment in the rain watching in a dazed state, leading to the similar opening. The final scenes feature Levine and Prinsloo as obsessed lovers kissing—whilst disrobed and covered in fake blood.

The music video was heavily panned by critics[citation needed] and has been condemned[by whom?] for dehumanizing women and glamorizing violence.[5][6] Jessica Valenti of The Guardian criticized the video for attempting to make violence against women seem "edgy" stating that "there is nothing 'alternative' about showing women being stalked, hunted, raped or killed because it’s something that happens every damn day."[5] RAINN (Rape, Abuse, Incest National Network) released a statement condemning the video, which wrote that "No one should ever confuse the criminal act of stalking with romance. The trivialisation of these serious crimes, like stalking, should have no place in the entertainment industry."[6]

Chart performance[edit]

In the United States, the song debuted at number 86 on the US Billboard Hot 100 chart. On October 18, 2014, the song rose from the number 33 to 8,[7] giving the band their tenth top-ten hit overall and their seventh consecutive Hot 100 top-ten hit since the 2011 chart-topping single "Moves like Jagger", the song reached its million sales mark in the US in November 2014.[8] The song peaked at number three on the Billboard Hot 100 issue dating November 22, 2014 and spent fourteen weeks in the top 10.

In other countries, the song has made the top-ten progress as well, reaching number 2 in Canada, it is also a moderate success in the United Kingdom, where it charted at number 27.

Live performances[edit]

The band performed the song on Saturday Night Live and The Voice; in February 2015, the band performed the song for the 2015 Victoria's Secret Swim Special in Puerto Rico.

Credits and personnel[edit]

Credits adapted from the liner notes of V.[9]

Locations
Personnel
  • Songwriting – Adam Levine, Shellback, Benjamin Levin
  • Production – Shellback
  • Lead Vocals – Adam Levine
  • Instrumentation, background vocals, programming – Shellback
  • Mixing – Serban Ghenea
  • Vocals recording – Shellback, Max Martin
  • Engineering – Noah Passovoy
  • Assistant engineers – Eric Eylands, Tim Roberts
  • Mix engineer – John Hanes
  • Lead and Rhythm Guitar – James Valentine, Jesse Carmichael
  • Bass – Mickey Madden
  • Drums and percussion – Matt Flynn
  • Keyboards and synthesizers – Jesse Carmichael, PJ Morton

Track listings[edit]