21 by Adele Reviews

21 by Adele

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Adele Proves Her Worth Once and For All.

Apr 18, 2011
Review by  
Rated a Very Helpful Review

Pros:Magical and Airy, Heartwrenching, Soulful, Catchy, Indelible Melodies

Cons:"Rumour Has It" Is A Bit Mediocre

The Bottom Line: --


Amongst other British artists who broke through the U.S. markets (Amy Winehouse, Natasha Bedingfield, Jessie J, Duffy, etc), Adele seemed to be the most underperformed. Though winning a Grammy for Best New Artist, let's face it: nobody really payed any attention to her. She was definitely soulful and reminiscent of late 60's soul but other popular British artists definitely overshadowed the woman's undeniable talent. Granted, in 2011's music scene, Adele has proved to have the strongest legs; Duffy suffered a sophomore slump, Amy Winehouse is too busy smoking crack to record her second studio album, Natasha Bedingfield has lost relevance, and Jessie J is just starting to climb her rise to fame stateside. 21, the singer's sophomore effort, recently has been certified Platinum, lead single "Rolling In The Deep" has cracked the top ten, and fans and critics alike are raving.

Adele proves to be the best British singer/songwriter in recent memory, a modern version of a 90's adult contemporary diva who feels what she sings, instead of showcasing how she sings. Those powerhouse vocals are just waiting for an incredible dance remix but then again, Adele's magic compliments the simplicity of her producer's work. Loaded with incredible melodies, fantastic vocals, and plenty of soul, 21 demonstrates just exactly how to create a modern soul album with elements of Hip-Hop, Jazz, and Blues. Magical and airy tales of heartbreak is 21's center point. Adele's bruised vocals alongside a simple piano, like on "Take It All," makes for a surprising moment that will surely give you pause, while an acoustic track like "Someone Like You" gives the album an airy, sort of spooky, regretful feel to love lost.

What's striking about 21 is how many Pop hooks are buried beneath these ballads and mid-tempo grooves; hidden in plain sight, catchy yet tasteful. Though the rest of the tracklist doesn't reach the height of the lead single, the dark and bluesy, gospel tune is much too perfect to be relived. If the guilt and remembrance of a haunting past in Adele's voice when she sings "We could've had it all" doesn't give you chills, check out "Turning Tables" and "Someone Like You," melodic versions of 19's "Hometown Glory" with heart wrenching vocal performances; definitely the most talented vocalist on the Hot 100 at the moment.

The only let down here is "Rumour Has It," a production by Ryan Tedder that not only takes bits and pieces from Jordin Spark's "Battlefield" and Kelly Clarkson's "Already Gone" but it also refuses to let Adele's beautiful voice roam free like it rightfully should. Still, the song is listenable, arena-ready, and it oddly fits with the album's overall sound. To conclude, let's just say you'll be convinced once you listen to this album. Every other British artist who has blasted on to the scene has been soulful but there's something different about Adele. She's different.

1. Rolling In The Deep
2. Rumour 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
RATING: 4/5


Recommend this product? Yes

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