Say ‘Hello’ to the best album of 2015: Adele’s ’25’
Adele’s third album, 25, has smashed nearly every musical record you can imagine. It has sold 2.43 million copies in three days and it deserves every accolade it has received. I bought and listened to the album with high expectations, and the album surpassed them.
I’m sure I don’t need to tell you that the opening track, “Hello,” is so good that it’s practically taking over the world, so let’s move on to the next song.
“Send My Love (To Your New Lover)” provides a nice contrast to “Hello;” it’s much more upbeat. Its lyrics are sassy without being nasty and it’s got a youthful sound to it—a quality that, as great as Adele’s music is, is rare for it.
After the haunting “I Miss You” follow three tracks that, in my opinion, are the best. “When We Were Young” has a gorgeous melody and I love the way it grows. It begins with only piano and a simply melody and by the end, it’s got percussion, vocal riffs and rasps galore, and even a beautifully harmonizing choir. At the very end, it returns to the simplicity with which it begins.
“Remedy” is another rarity for Adele: a song about a happy relationship. It needs nothing other than its gorgeous piano, melody and lyrics to make it a favorite. “Water Under the Bridge” is another upbeat track and one that will most definitely get stuck in your head. It does for me, but I don’t mind. The choir-like harmonies are amazing and the best moment of the song is arguably the very end, when the instruments drop out, leaving only the vocals.
“River Lea” is good, though I’m not obsessed with it like I am with the three previous tracks. The chorus is very catchy and stylistically cool and the lyrics, which compare her to a river near where she grew up, are very inventive. The layered end, however, has a strange sound to it with its overlapping vocals.
I think the front half of the album is much stronger than the back half. The best part of Track 8, “Love in the Dark,” is the beautiful string part. “A Million Years Ago,” with its gentle guitar part, sounds like it should be played on a gondola in Venice. Though it showcases her incredible range, the lyrics, about regretting decisions in your past and missing people who are no longer in your life, are very depressing and heavy even by Adele standards.
“All I Ask” is fantastic, though. It’s another piece that opts away from complexity to showcase the songstress’ incredible voice and just when you think it can’t get any better, it surprises you with a totally unexpected key change. The final track, “Sweetest Devotion,” is an exultant song, but it’s a little belt-heavy.
Just like 21 was, 25 is a masterpiece. One thing, though, that I’m confused about: why does Adele sing so much about no longer being young? It comes up multiple times in this album: “when we were younger, and free,” in “Hello,” “I let my heart decide the way when I was young,” in “A Million Years Ago” and she’s got a whole song called “When We Were Young,” in which she laments, “I’m so mad I’m getting old, it makes me reckless.” Adele, you’re 27!!
But the album is still terrific. Every song is good and even the ones I’ve given less glowing reviews are just a lesser level of excellent. Adele sets the bar high and she really is in a league of her own musically. If you haven’t figured it out by now, I’m a fan.↑ Back to top