Maroon 5 - Daylight
Song by Maroon 5
from the album Overexposed
November 27, 2012
Conway Studios (Los Angeles, California)
Soft rock
Adam Levine, Max Martin, SAMM, Mason Levy
Levine, MdL, Max Martin
Maroon 5 singles chronology
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"One More Night" "Love Somebody"
Overexposed track listing
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"Payphone" "Lucky Strike"

"Daylight" is a song performed by American pop rock band Maroon 5. The song was released as the third single from their fourth studio album, Overexposed (2012). Lead singer Adam Levine co-wrote and co-produced it with Max Martin and Mason "MdL" Levy, with additional writing from Sam Martin. The song is a soft rock ballad about realizing that one has to move on from an old relationship, but not fully wanting to leave just yet.

The song received a mixed reception from music critics. Some criticized Levine's vocals and called it a filler among the dance-oriented tracks on the album, while others felt a Coldplay inspiration in the end of the chorus. The song has charted in many countries, reaching the top-twenty in Australia, Canada, New Zealand, South Korea, and the United States.

Background and writing Edit

"Daylight" was announced as the third single taken from the band's fourth studio album, Overexposed (2012). It premiered on November 8, 2012 on The Voice. "Daylight" was written by Adam Levine, Max Martin, Sam Martin and Mason "MdL" Levy, while production was handled by Levine, Martin and MdL. Levine has stated numerous times that it is his favorite track on the entire album. It is a soft rock song, and according to Scott Shetler of Pop Crush, "It starts with a pulsing intro featuring a lone electric guitar building up to big choruses and a stadium-sized climax."

On "Daylight," Levine is the lover who, for some reason, has to creep away in the morning. It is also seeing as "a tale about saving the last night with a special someone, since the relationship is about to end." "In the daylight/ We'll be on our own/ But tonight I need to hold you so close," he sings. Levine never explains exactly why he has to leave, but it is inferred that trouble has been brewing for some time, based on the line when he asks, "We knew this day would come / We knew it all along / How did it come so fast?." Helen Nowotnik of The Triangle analyzed that "If 'Never Gonna Leave This Bed' and 'Must Get Out' collided into one song, it would be 'Daylight'." The intro is the same as the Backstreet Boys' 2005 single "Just Want You to Know", as noted by Cameron Adams from The Herald Sun

Critical reception Edit

The song received mixed reviews from most music critics. Cameron Adams of Herald Sun also noted that "it sounds like Max Martin trying to write a Coldplay song by recycling his Backstreet Boys handiwork." Chris Payne wrote for Billboard that Daylight is "a bittersweet tale that builds momentum towards one of the album's most up-tempo songs that follows it; listen closely and you might hear a Chris Martin homage in Levine's 'whoa-oh's'." Mesfin Fekadu from The Huffington Post also saw similarities, writing that the song "looks like a bad Coldplay cover." Adam Markovitz from Entertainment Weekly agreed, calling it "a Coldplay-ish song." Markovitz also wrote that the song "has choruses so thickly produced that the only physical instrument you can reliably pick out is Levine's larynx. Not that he comes off as particularly organic either, since his voice is usually processed into a kind of high, disaffected whine — like a male Rihanna or an android castrato — that's ideal for tracing the contours of a pop hook." Helen Nowotnik of The Triangle thought that the song "It’s the perfect fusion of Maroon 5’s old and new sounds."

Scott Shetler of PopCrush gave the song 3 out of 5 stars, writing that "‘Daylight’ doesn’t blow us away immediately, but its endearingly bittersweet lyrics and catchy 'whoa-oh' chants make this a song that will probably get better with each repeated listen. Even though slower songs aren’t faring particularly well at radio right now, this one might be strong enough to break through, especially since Maroon 5′s popularity is at an all-time high with the success of recent singles ‘Payphone’ and ‘One More Night.’" Evan Sawdey of PopMatters wrote the song "is your big anthem that actually could’ve been a lot bigger had they not relied entirely on a thin drum palette during the chorus." Martyn Young from musicOMH complained that "By far the most irritating aspect of their magpie-like approach though is the overuse of a 'Whoah, whoah, whoah' vocal which features in almost every song, including 'Daylight'." Robert Copsey of Digital Spy wrote that the song "feels anonymous despite its stadium-sized chorus." Grace Duncan of Under the Guncalled it "watery and uninteresting, a pop song walled in by clichéd optimistic meanderings."

Chart performance Edit

"Daylight" debuted at number 70 on the ARIA Charts. "Daylight" is the band's thirteenth top 100 single and follows on from their last three consecutive tracks that all peaked at number 2 - "Moves Like Jagger" (in August, 2011), "Payphone" (in June, 2012) and "One More Night" (in August, 2012). It later climbed to number 37, on November 25, 2012. The song re-entered only on January 27, 2013, at number 19, becoming its peak position. In New Zealand, the song debuted at number 32 on the RIANZ chart week of December 24, 2012. The following week, it climbed to number 23, remaining the position for a further week. Later, it jumped to number 19, while in its fifth week, it peaked at number 11.

"Daylight" debuted at number 77 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart, on the week ending December 22, 2012. The same week, it also debuted on the Adult Pop Songs, at number 37. Later, the song climbed to number 58 on the Hot 100 chart, becoming the "Greatest Gainer", on the week ending December 29, 2012. In its third week, the song gave a climb to number 46. In its eighth week, the song jumped to number 17, while in its ninth week, it climbed to number 14. In its tenth week, the song jumped to number 7, after its performance at the Grammys, becoming their seventh Hot 100 top 10 single. As of June 2014, the song has sold 2,169,000 copies in the US.

In Canada, the song debuted at number 95, before climbing to number 54, becoming the "Greatest Gainer". In its sixth week, the song jumped to number 10, becoming their eighth top-ten single in Canada, while being the first time that they have three top-ten singles from the same album.

Music video Edit

On September 18, 2012, the band announced on their website: "We need YOUR help for our next music video. We're asking YOU to record and share 'YOUR story', and that recording may be handpicked to appear in the video for our third single, 'Daylight', directed by Jonas Akerlund." Levine says, "As different as we all are, there are common themes that bring us together, inspire and show everyone what is important today. With this video, we’ll present the world today and beyond, creating more than just a music video." They also launched a website called "The Daylight Project" for more information and for people to submit their video. The music video was released on December 10, 2012. The accompanying music video sees fans express things they love and hate throughout the clip, after the band asked them to submit entries online. Another music video was made, titled "Daylight (Playing for Change)" and was uploaded on YouTube, on January 17, 2013.

Live performances Edit

On November 8, 2012, the band performed the song on The Voice with their touring member, Sam Farrar. The song was also performed on The Ellen DeGeneres Show on November 12, 2012. It was also performed on Saturday Night Live on November 18, 2012, along with "One More Night". The band performed the song at 2013 Grammy Awards on a mashup with "Girl On Fire," alongside Alicia Keys. The performance was introduced by LL Cool J, who claimed the performance was going to be "literally on fire." The performance was heavily criticized by critics in general. Samantha Martin of Pop Dust gave the performance 2.5 out of 5 stars, writing that she was "bored" with the performance, criticizing Alicia's onstage abilities. Martin also wrote that, "As expected, it was bland, and the interplay between 'Girl of Fire' and 'Daylight' weren’t as clever or inspired as LL Cool J might have advertised." Melissa Locker of Time gave the performance a "C" rating, writing that "the problem is: both songs are repetitive and light on hooks—mashing them together did neither song any favors." Marc Hogan of Spin listed the performance as one of the "worst," writing that Keys was "unfortunately below-her-usual-standards." He criticized her for not playing her usual piano, writing that "her stint on drums still felt like an effort to signal that she, like Maroon 5, can play an Instrument. It didn't matter. It doesn't matter. It never mattered," he concluded.

Credits and personnel Edit

Recording locations Edit

  • Recording – Conway Studios, (Los Angeles, California)
  • Mixed at – MixStar Studios, (Virginia Beach, Virginia)

Personnel Edit

  • Written by – Adam Levine, Mason Levy, Max Martin, Sam Martin
  • Producer – Adam Levine, MdL, Max Martin
  • Backing vocals – Brie Larson, Max Martin, Mickey Madden, Savannah Buffet
  • Drums – MdL, Shellback, Matt Flynn
  • Engineer (assistant for mix) – Phil Seaford
  • Engineer (assistant) – Eric Eylands
  • Engineer (for mix) – John Hanes
  • Guitar (additional), vocals (additional), keyboards (additional) – Max Martin
  • Mixed by – Serban Ghenea
  • Guitar (lead) – James Valentine
  • Bass – Mickey Madden
  • Programmed by (additional) – Max Martin, Shellback
  • Programmed by, keyboards – MdL
  • Recorded by – Noah "Mailbox" Passovoy