Adele’s new album is a sum of her life experiences
Three years ago, after winning a Grammy award for the Bond theme, Skyfall, Adele disappeared from the music scene. “Life happened,” she mulled in a recent interview. A vocal surgery, a marriage and child birth later she resurfaced. And the effect was dizzying. When she flipped a phone in November to croon into it, the social media went into an overdrive. Just two months into its release, her third album 25, has over 4 million copies in the UK alone. For the first time in history, Coldplay hasn’t debuted at number one. Hello is now the fastest song to touch a million views on YouTube.
At just 27 she has it all. An envious career, a loving family and super-stardom that would make all the ageing rock-stars jealous. This is because when Adele sings, she makes Taylor Swift look like a shallow teen princess and makes the Beliebers of the world irrelevant. She is the giddy girl next door. She seems human in a world of plastic-look-alike celebrities. A bankable star that talks about things everybody feels and experiences. Her songs reflect preoccupations of her multitude fans and talk of universal themes such as love and longing.
If you weren’t sold on her earlier, you will be now. In 25, she transcends genres. When I first heard Hello it invoked the nostalgic memories of 21 and I did not like it at first. But that’s Adele, she grows on you. Despite the overriding theme of a reconnection with the past, when I hear the single, I think of the singer reconnecting with herself. The lyrics then becomes about a woman looking to rediscover herself, after years of not knowing her metamorphosis than just the urge to reconnect with an ex. In an interview with the New York Times she clarifies this, saying that the line, I was wondering, if after all these years you’d like to meet, is her favourite piece of lyrics that she has ever written. “It is very much like me, to talk about myself,” she laughs.
Her album is a mix. And if you’re looking for consistency of sound, you should try someplace else because it has a little bit of everything. For example, Send my love(to your new lover) is reminiscent of her first album, albeit with a little folk music influence. And I miss you reminds you of Amy Winehouse and Back to Black. What makes the album stand out is the fact that she has a strong production team which amalgamates the melodrama and real life in equal measure. A trend that other artists like Lana Del Rey and Lorde have been trying to evoke.
As you dig deeper into the album, music feels more mature and balladish, but her epic moment comes in the song All I ask when she croons to give me a memory to use. One simple line, replete with perfect melancholy and rhythm it sums up a feeling that all of us have been through. The album ends with Sweetest Devotion, a peppy number dedicated to her child. In her singing, she shows that life is about living. It isn’t bad to lose one’s self and take a backseat to life once in a while. To reflect on things. To be comforted in nostalgia. To sum up life. As it has been so far.
The writer is currently listening to ‘Soap and skin’