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Adele's Two New Songs 2014 Reviewed (And Stream Them Here)

Written And Recorded In 2010

Written And Recorded In 2010

So how is Adele’s third album gonna 25 gonna be? I’m not a big fan of the brassy balladeer so my sense is it will be nothing very good, more bombastic hi-jinx on mediocre songs except for a winner here and there. But what about the rest of the world, can she pull off a hat trick of middle of the road power ballads?

Certainly, there is an audience gagging for it and since all we’ve heard about 25 from the 26 year is a tweet last May: “”Bye bye 25. See you again later in the year x.” And then…nothing, till the release Wednesday of two new tracks, well not really new, outtakes from 21, “”You’ll Never See Me Again” and “Never Gonna Leave You”, both written with producer Fraser T Smith (who also wrote the dreaded “Set Fire To The Rain”).

One expresses why Adele maybe better than you might think, the other why she might not be as good as you hope. “Never Gonna Leave You” is a beautiful piano ballad, really simple, so simple it seems in the midst of being arranged though it works perfectly well in this stripped down version. It is all soft breath and plaintive declarations: “Let’s go back to the start because I’m never gonna leave you, you’re the one that I want.”

But “You’ll Never See Me Again” is more what  we think of when we think of Adele, an underwhelming bombastic track with heavy drums following her and back up singers. It is a triumph of meh and let me state here that my problem with Adele (though it has sometimes been her phrasing) has never been her singing. My problem has been her material, which is such moldy heavy emoting it drives me up the wall. The proof is these two songs, where this great singer is only ever as good as her songs.

Never Gonna Leave You – B+

You’ll Never See Me Again – C-

 

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