First Hit #1: February 4, 2012
One could argue that Set Fire to the Rain’s chorus is a bizarre mixed metaphor that doesn’t make a lick of sense. One could also argue that after the third successful single about a breakup, Adele needs to sing about something else. These are both totally valid points to make, but the fact remains that it still works. It’s somewhere between Adele’s previous hits, a bit less propulsive than Rolling in the Deep, significantly less minimal than Someone Like You, and there’s still a great understanding of just how to make Adele sound good. Sure her lyrics are all mired in the same disaster of a breakup – to be fair, she was 21 – but musically she’s making a record that’s focused but still varied, something that knows when to hold back and take different approaches to showcase her voice and performance. And even if the metaphors are mixed, she’s able to convey the meaning entirely through her vocal, the mark of a great performer.
That said, I hope that she has songs that are a bit less focused on the failings in her personal life next time around.