The Return of Adele

By Fraser Botting

A two-syllable word that has echoed throughout the music industry for over a decade. Everyone under the sun has at least once found themselves relating to the often passionate (and always heart-breaking) lyrics of this English songstress: from angsty teens; to mothers, pouring themselves another glass of red wine.

With 24 Grammy Award Nominations and 19 wins, it’s no surprise that Adele has solidified herself as a song-making goddess.
Due to this iconic status, Adele’s utter genius was missed to a much greater extent during her 5-year hiatus after her third studio album 25. Despite her statements that 25 really was her last hurrah, Adele super-fans like me, still held out hope for a mighty return.

And, on a monotonously average summer day in 2020 (Amid the torment of COVID-19 lockdown-blues) I saw a Twitter user retweet a rumour of another Adele album, set to be released that September. Naturally, I didn’t believe it but that glimmer of hope remained – a small light in the dark shadows of my cerebrum.

One year past (alas, no Adele in sight), and despite the two Taylor Swift albums I had been spending my time snivelling to in a foetal position, I needed another fix of rich white-woman problems to haunt my daydreams. It was around this time when the news that a new single was being released later in the year, and soon “Easy on Me” was gracing the radio and our streaming platforms. I was amongst many who lay in bed on that October night and waited until the song was added.

There’s no doubt Easy on Me tread no new ground in terms of Adele’s previous discography. Usually, when an artist shows little development, sonically that is, I would criticise it. However, Adele is one of the few that get away with this. I don’t suppose anyone is listening to Adele for pumping bass or vocoder additions.

No, Adele speaks to the simple side of our personalities: the side that wants to dump our boyfriends and isolate ourselves in solitary confinement for a while. I remember vividly shouting Someone Like You with earphones in as I took a melancholy walk from my bed to the fridge – I remember this so clearly because, of course, it was just last night.

We can only hope that, come November 19th, Adele will cradle us softly with more symphonic woes and emotional pain with 30. When she does – let’s go easy on her, ok?

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