The follow-up to 21 is a peerless collection of stately ballads and seismic vocal performances. Written with an impressive team of collaborators—Paul Epworth, Ryan Tedder, Max Martin, Danger Mouse, and Bruno Mars’ Smeezingtons squad among them—after the birth of her son and a pressing vocal cord operation, 25 finds Adele singing with newfound strength and clarity. From the volcanic chorus of “Hello” to the hilly melodies of “Send My Love (To Your New Lover)” and the stratospheric belting of “Sweetest Devotion,” each song is an expertly arranged, beautifully realized showcase for a once-in-a-generation voice.
I am vanquished. I wasn’t ready. I wasn’t ready to have every fiber of my being and soul…