Maroon 5 made a career out of slick Top 40 hits, but in recent years, they’ve been aggressively pursuing partners in other genres, recruiting Kendrick Lamar, Future and SZA for new songs. On Thursday, Adam Levine’s outfit released an even more unexpected collaboration: a St. Vincent remix of their Cardi B-featuring single “Girls Like You.”
The original “Girls Like You” is impressively placid, a gentle wash of sound that’s punctured by Cardi B’s typically emphatic guest verse. (The Cardi B version is in itself a remix; she’s not on the album cut.) But St. Vincent has no interest in tranquility: Her “Girls Like You” comes packed full of crass programmed drums and distorted guitars.
In addition, St. Vincent shrewdly rearranges the track so that Cardi B’s verse comes first, catapulting the “Girls Like You” remix forward. Finally, St. Vincent dispenses with many of Levine’s lines, so Cardi B is now the primary vocalist on the record.
Maroon 5 commissioned four different remixes of “Girls Like You.” Wondagurl, Tokimonsta and Cray are responsible for the other three.
“Girls Like You” reached Number Three on the Hot 100. In the land of Top 40 radio, where Maroon 5 are kings, it became their tenth Number One hit.