Adele – 21

Release date: January 24, 2011
Label: XL, Columbia


  1. Rolling in the Deep
  2. Rumor Has It
  3. Turning Tables
  4. Don’t You Remember
  5. Set Fire to the Rain
  6. He Won’t Go
  7. Take it All
  8. I’ll Be Waiting
  9. One and Only
  10. Lovesong
  11. Someone Like You

After the success of Chasing Pavements from her debut album 19, Adele is back with 21. In it, the vocals are sharper, the lyrics are more controlled, and the sound seems less raw.

The album opens with Rolling in the Deep, the first single to promote the album. A quite energetic song about a lover that has done her wrong, accompanied with beats, backing vocals and a piano. It then continues with the great beat-driven Rumor Has It, backed with simple “oohs” and a simple hook, and packed with a lot of soul.

The album takes quite a complete turn in Turning Tables, which still contains Adele’s powerful and soulful vocals, but loses the energy that began the record. The song has grand instrumentalization, and it’s big and dramatic compared to the next track, Don’t You Remember, which still has big vocals but is accompanied by acoustic guitars.

Set Fire to the Rain seems a little too produced compared to the other tracks, especially because of the filters in Adele’s voice, which certainly doesn’t need them. However, from the track He Won’t Go on, Adele goes back to simpler instrumentalization and clearer vocals… even in the gospel-y Take It All.

Best tracks: Rolling in the Deep, Rumor Has It

Rating: ★★★½☆ 

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YAM Magazine editor, photographer, blogger, translator and part-time web designer. Film junkie, music junkie… and lately series (a.k.a. TV) junkie.

4 Responses

  1. Camiele White says:

    This woman’s voice is astonishing. I’m completely in love with British Soul music. It seems an artform that was birthed in the literal soul and struggle of American Blacks has become more appealing overseas with White Brits. I don’t know how that happened, but I’m happy to not be disappointed. The “Blue-eyed Soul” of America is just a waste of time and most mainstream [stress on MAINSTREAM] Soul music from Black artists is rubbish [though there’s a great deal of underground stuff that’s, obviously, fantastic].

    Anyway, I’ve gotten waaaay off topic. She’s brilliant and I love her sound –raw, emotional, unfiltered. And, hey, she’s a big, beautiful woman. We need more of these sexy beasts around ;-)

    • amy says:

      @Camiele White, love it too. Raw, emotional and unfiltered. I agree that there’s a lot of good soul coming from white British girls, too bad many are not considered “famous” just because they’re not popular in America.

      I do like Adele’s 19 better though. Even if I can jam to Rumor Has It, gosh I love that song.

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