Say “Hello” to Adele’s Comeback

Renee Margolis, Contributing Writer

Genre: Pop, Gospel, R&B
Release Date: November 20, 2015
Record Label: XL Recordings
Length: 48:25
Rating: 4/5

British singer Adele returns from hiatus after releasing her third album, 25.  The 27-year-old British star reappeared in the music industry four years after her album 21 was released. With 20 million albums sold previously, the release of 25 brought about the biggest sales week album since albums were first tracked in 1991.

Co-writers Tobias Jesso Jr., Paul Epworth, Max Martin, Ryan Tedder, and Greg Kurstin played important roles in the production and songwriting process of 25. Notably, Bruno Mars also assisted in writing the lyrics to the soulful song “All I Ask.”

Many listeners anticipated the release of Adele’s album, hoping to hear her single, “Hello,” which had previously been released as a single on the radio. Her album as a whole tends to reflect her entire career.

She highlights the end of many aspects of life but also sets a sentimental mood by reflecting on the past. After years of writer’s block during the time of raising her child, Adele thought her career was coming to an end.

Fortunately, that was quite the opposite outcome after fans raved over her romantic yet powerful hits that are scattered throughout 25. Titles like “Million Years Ago” and “When We Were Young” create a dramatic melody of regrets and memories that she hopes to look past. These songs are generally more relatable and create a stronger sense of empathy simply through the pain that she expresses through her vocals.  

In contrast, “Water Under the Bridge” and “River Lea” are more upbeat with simple and repetitive instrumentals. Without the same emotional appeal as most of the other songs, it is difficult to connect to their messages. These are the tunes that are catchy for about 30 seconds and then become uninteresting.

After pressing the skip button halfway through “Water Under the Bridge” and “River Lea,” jumping to “Remedy” will once again highlight the pain within Adele’s mind as she describes “the cruel world” and her “sheltering” and caring nature. Guided by an acoustic piano, there are no other distractions to take away from the floating notes that escape her mouth.

Most of the songs on Adele’s album 25 are intensely passionate and deliver catchy melodies to the listeners. However, this album is almost depressing rather than motivating at points. Every lyric relates to the dependence on men that she has or once had. The pain and struggles of relationships are reiterated in almost every song.

Nevertheless, if you like emotional powerhouses such as John Legend, Sam Smith, and Christina Aguilera, you will enjoy the soulful comeback album 25.