The Five Most Underrated Songs By Adele You Should Listen To Right Now
It’s almost five years since Adele released “25”. She has been away for so long, and so many things have changed for her along the road. I wonder if it had much of an impact on her storytelling.
Now she’s back, hosting “Saturday Night Live” this week. Does it mean a new album is on the way? Are we getting more powerhouse ballads? Or less? Maybe she made a disco album like her fellow brit Jessie Ware?
Rumour has it she might drop new music this Halloween.
Whatever it is, Adele can surprise us. She did before.
Yes, she might be known the most for her personable love songs, but her music isn’t as homogenous as one might think — there’s more to it than melodrama.
Anyway, while we wait for her next big thing, I suggest we have a look at her most underrated songs.
5. I Miss You (“25”)
In pop music, “sexy” songs tend to be too literal — more like porn and less like an intimate confession. But “I Miss You” is different.
There is always something innately provocative about trip-hop heavy drumbeats, and Adele’s husky voice brings much-needed heat to the icy instrumental. This makes the sound resembling of the seductive gist of Sade’s “Ordinary Love” and Portishead’s “Glory Box”, only with more ardour.
Yes, Adele can set fire to the rain.
4. Painting Pictures (“19”)
In a rather counterintuitive pattern, Adele’s most poetic, most creative songs are about anything but love. Painting Pictures is one of them.
Adele’s bigger hits may have a more polished, pop-star-fitting sound, but Painting Pictures doesn’t need it— it’s too funky and punky for that. Which makes it so unlike any other song in the singer’s discography.
3. Million Years Ago (“25”)
The most distinctive thing about Adele’s “25” album is how it trades sophisticated sound productions for mostly unostentatious instrumentals — leaving vocals and lyrics to rein the record. Which works just fine. Sometimes the voice and a guitar are all you need to make a great song. Million Years Ago is a testimony to that. A minimalist reflection on the hardship of being an adult, inspired by the subtle masterpieces of French chanson and Russian romance.
2. River Lea (“25”)
One of Adele’s greatest songs, if not the best, River Lea is a ghostly reminder of the life she had before fame. Airy, all-embracing, spiritual chant, which is decidedly personal and at the same time universal — you, and I, we all have our very own River Lea to blame everything on.
1. Hometown Glory (“19”)
“Hometown Glory” is where it all began. It’s the first song Adele ever wrote, and it’s the first song that comes to my mind when I think of her. She conveys the essence of an English town with such precision here — it’s like I’m back there, breathing thick and opaque air, and wondering how everybody stays alive wearing short skirts and shorts in winter. Even though “Hometown Glory” is a fairly popular song — with more than 100 million views on YouTube —it, nevertheless, deserves all the billions that “Hello” has.