Review: Adele’s like “Hey, what’s up? Hello.”
#1 Review in America is our regular recap of what’s happening at the top of the charts. This week we’re checkin in on Adele, who’s single “Hello” officially debuted at #1 last Tuesday.
Apparently Adele has seen your pretty ass as you came in the door, thank you very much, and there’s one thing she has to say to you:
According to Wikipedia, “‘Hello’ is a piano ballad with soul influences, and its lyrics discuss themes of nostalgia and regret,” which just so happens to be the exact description of every other Adele song every recorded. And that’s great for people who love the sound Adele created and solidified on 19 and 21 — which, apparently, is a veritable butt-load of people — but also at least a little bit disappointing.
For as incredibly talented as Adele is as a singer, and for as great of an ear as she clearly has for pop music, it feels less satisfying each year that she keeps churning out the same shtick dripping with self-critical regret, mournful sorrow, and some soaring-ass string arrangements. That’s not to say that “Hello” is a bad song, because the whole thing feels almost too-perfectly calibrated for maximum radio airplay and demographic appeal, with its reverberating piano and dynamic arrangement and because what heartless bastard couldn’t love Adele. But coming off a summer period where we were treated to a slew of weird and original efforts bumping at the top of the charts, it’s at least a little bit disheartening to hear Adele, and pop radio at large, revert back to the same old same old.
It’s not fun to make fun of Adele for making slightly boring songs for the slightly boring millions and millions of people who will support her music. But it also isn’t fun to feel like an artist with the vocal finesse and pop sensibilities of Adele could be doing something so much more interesting than putting out the next song that’s going to be playing at every Starbucks you walk into for the next five years.