|Adele — 25 (November 20th, 2015)|
Adele — 25 (November 20th, 2015)•Ξ• A London singer/songwriter who became a superstar thanks to her soaring vocals as well as her combination of spirited soul and sensitive material. It takes a big artist to follow–up the tremendous commercial and cultural impact of an album like 21, but an extraordinary one to do it in their own time to make it a worthy sequel. Much to her relief, Adele has achieved that with 25, drawing upon past heartaches, a yearning nostalgia and the swelling love a new mother experiences to create — yet again — a record that feels like a window into her soul, but one that we can all relate to in our own way.
•Ξ• Nothing here wallows on the pitfalls of fame or the lavish new lifestyle she leads, but rather keeps its focus on emotion and astute turns of phrase that sum up life’s little fears and delights with candour. Adele’s vocals have never sounded so fiery during the sweeping choruses and tender during the soft moments.
•Ξ• It seems obvious to give such a highly anticipated record — and one that has basically already gone to number one all over the world — a five star review. But for its simplicity, sincereity and striking soulfulness, it truly does deserve it.Born: Adele Laurie Blue Adkins, 5 May 1988, Tottenham, London, England, UK
Album release: November 20th, 2015
Record Label: XL Recordings
01. Hello 4:56
02. Send My Love (To Your New Lover) 3:43
03. I Miss You 5:49
04. When We Were Young 4:51
05. Remedy 4:05
06. Water Under the Bridge 4:01
07. River Lea 3:45
08. Love in the Dark 4:46
09. Million Years Ago 3:47
10. All I Ask 4:32
11. Sweetest Devotion 4:12
Producer: Greg Kurstin, Paul Epworth, Ariel Rechtshaid, Danger Mouse
•Ξ• Adele Adkins Greg Kurstin 1, 6, 9
•Ξ• Adkins Karl Johan Schuster Max Martin 2
•Ξ• Adkins Paul Epworth 3, 11
•Ξ• Adkins Tobias Jesso Jr. 4
•Ξ• Adkins Ryan Tedder 5
•Ξ• Adkins Brian Burton 7
•Ξ• Adkins Samuel Dixon 8
•Ξ• Adkins Bruno Mars Christopher “Brody” Brown Philip Lawrence 10
•Ξ• “25” is the highly anticipated new album from Adele, and is her first new music since her Oscar winning single “Skyfall” in 2012.
•Ξ• “Hello” is the debut single from “25.” The cinematic video for “Hello” was shot in the countryside surrounding Montreal and is directed by the celebrated young Canadian director Xavier Dolan (Mommy, Tom at the Farm).
Adele, 25, album review: ‘pop doesn’t come more perfect than this’.
Neil McCormick, music critic • 18 NOVEMBER 2015 • 4:47PM • Score: *****
•Ξ• Adele is back, in case anyone has failed to notice. After a three–year absence, the BRIT school graduate sang a tentative “Hello, it’s me” on her comeback single and clocked up a million digital sales and a billion video hits in a week. Her previous album, 21, sold over 30 million copies, the only release this century to scale such dizzy heights. The ailing music industry is desperate for her to pull off the same trick again. •Ξ• The rest of us are just hoping for another great album full of heartfelt songs delivered with a warm, powerful voice that makes us want to sing along, punch the air and shed a tear.
•Ξ• The first thing to say is I don’t think anyone will be disappointed. Covering much of the same kind of musical and emotional terrain, 25 is certainly the equal of its predecessor. What it sacrifices in youthful rawness it makes up in maturity and sheer class. Adele Adkins has taken her time over her third album and it shows.
•Ξ• A lot is said about Adele’s fantastic singing but the key to her global success is surely that she gives herself material worth wrapping her chops around. 25 is crammed top to bottom with perfectly formed songs — elegantly flowing melodies, direct and truthful lyrics and richly textured production — all sung as if her life depends on it.There are deep, resonant piano ballads (Remedy, Love In The Dark and All I Ask), a brace of slinky, playful pop belters (Send My Love (To Your New Lover) and Sweetest Devotion) and some spooky, thunderous, big production dramas (I Miss You, Water Under The Bridge).
•Ξ• “I’d like to be able to stand the test of time and the speed that the world is moving. I’d like to make records forever with the time I’ve been given for this one. — Adele, i–D interview
•Ξ• The highlight has to be River Lea, a blast of North London gospel that improbably locates the source of Adele’s musical soul in the waters of Chingford, Walthamstow and Tottenham. “When I was a child I grew up by the River Lea / There was something in the water and now that something’s in me.”
Now 27, and a mother of one in a settled relationship, the album looks back a couple of years to a more transitional phase (hence the title). It is a collection of torch songs, filled with longing for lost love and mourning her own faded innocence, filtered through more emotional distance than the raw, hurting ballads and blues of 21.
•Ξ• Max Martin. These are names that turn up everywhere in the charts, so the album’s very organic, old–fashioned flavour comes from Adele herself. Musically, she stands squarely in the middle of the road, and it is only her earthy personality and soulful honesty that lends her any kind of cutting edge. For a contemporary pop star, she never ventures much further forward in musical eras than the Eighties. You can detect nods to Lionel Richie, Phil Collins, Carole King, Burt Bacharach and even the chanson of Charles Aznavour, with a hint of Enya’s Orinoco Flow in the rhythm and melody of Sweetest Devotion. But it would be churlish to carp when pop doesn’t come much more perfect than this.
•Ξ• The beauty of Adele’s singing is how effortless it is. The depth of her notes is luxurious with the slightest of croaks in her upper range lending a twist of soul. She gives herself space, words falling neatly with music and rhythm, albeit she has the advantage of being able to stretch vowels and add syllables apparently at will. “It’s so co–oo–oo– old out here–ee–eer in your weel–de–er–ne–ess” looks ridiculous in print but sounds like the truth when Adele puts her heart into it. There’s real joy in her vocal, even when she is grappling with private pain. She loves to sing, and the world loves to hear her. •Ξ• http://www.telegraph.co.uk/
BY LEWIS CORNER; SCORE: *****
|Adele — 25 (November 20th, 2015)|