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Editorial Reviews

21 is the eagerly awaited sophomore album from British singer-songwriter Adele. It’s the follow up to Adele’s critically acclaimed, Grammy award winning debut album 19 (both named after her age at the time the songs were written). Recorded in Malibu and London, 21 offered Adele the opportunity to work with such luminary producers and songwriters as Rick Rubin, Paul Epworth, Ryan Tedder, Dan Wilson and Fraser T. Smith, as well as continuing to work with Francis “Eg” White and Jim Abbiss.

This new collection of songs showcases the growth of this incredible artist, who at the very young age of twenty two, exhibits the poise of a seasoned veteran. Adele’s music takes some new direction while staying true to her signature style. “I discovered lots of artists I'd never heard of, particularly Wanda Jackson, Allison Krauss, Yvonne Fair, Andrew Bird, Neko Case, Lady Antebellum and Steel Drivers who I fell in love with. Then I delved in to more from artists I've loved forever - Mary J. Blige, Kanye West, Elbow, Mos Def, Alanis Morissette, Tom Waits and Sinead O'Connor. There's something in every single one of these artists that have really really inspired 21.”
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Digital Booklet: 21
Digital Booklet: 21
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (February 22, 2011)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Columbia
  • ASIN: B004EBT5CU
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2,724 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #5 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

558 of 585 people found the following review helpful By Madeline on February 22, 2011
Format: MP3 Music
Adele's 19 was strong. 21 is simply timeless.

In the past two years, Adele has refined and reinvented her unique sound that always puts her aching yet powerful vocals and lyrics at the forefront. These are songs that could have been released in the 60s as easily as 30 years from now. Adele has injected her trademark piano ballads with the best from several different musical genres including Americana roots and country, r&b, blues and gospel. The music is exciting and simply is. It lives, breathes.

There are a few tracks towards the middle that are remarkable only because Adele sings them-- and while they aren't quite filler, they aren't as memorable as standout tracks like "Rolling in the Deep," "Set Fire to the Rain," "Someone Like You," and "Turning Tables." Adele set the bar so high with these songs that anything else short of magic, is sort of a letdown. However, as a whole--this album so involves you that you can feel these stories as your own.

I played a couple songs for my mom, who at forty years older than I, generally criticizes my music taste, and the first thing she said was "Wow, this girl really knows how to write a story--those songs are beautiful."

21 is haunting, pulsing, soaring and very intimate. It's music that will be remembered.
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302 of 327 people found the following review helpful By M. R. Holmes on April 17, 2011
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I am closing in on 61 years old. Classic rock is my primary musical preference. I am very critical of younger artists. That being said, I was amazed myself at how much I have enjoyed Adele 21. I first heard Rolling in the Deep on a video station and was intrigued by the haunting background vocalists. I bought the CD for the only song I had heard and was pleased with almost every cut.
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256 of 278 people found the following review helpful By Alan N. on March 3, 2011
Format: MP3 Music
From start to finish this album is a testament to what good music should sound like.

Crisp, poignant, vulnerable, melodic and soulful. You can tell Adele crafted this album carefully because such attention to detail is paid. Personally I haven't seen songwriting of this caliber in popular music in a long long time. She is a throwback to a time when artists wrote poetry to music and people could relate in their own lives making this album, in my opinion, an instant classic.

From the thumping beats indicating a sense of urgency in "Rolling in The Deep" to the whispful and pulsating landscape of "Set Fire to The Rain" to the BRIDGE.. THE BEAUTIFUL BRIDGE in "One and Only".. the kind of chord change/structure that gave me goose bumps the first time I heard it.. to the loungy rendition of The Cure's "Lovesong" and the heartbreaking and deeply personal "Someone Like you" Adele takes you on a journey with her. This is the album you put on and live your life to. The kind of album you put on to garner inspiration and ultimately, heal.

This is the kind of album that can mend a broken heart. And I would like to thank Adele for breaking through where many other artists have tried and failed. Personally I didn't care for "19" all that much but "21" has made me a fan forever.

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95 of 100 people found the following review helpful By Eric DiPier VINE VOICE on March 19, 2011
Format: Audio CD
I didn't really think much of Adele's first album, "19". I like her voice but I didn't hear anything spectacular on that album.

"21" on the other hand...well, this is an album. And I mean that in the best possible way: it's not just a collection of songs thrown together, it's a journey, a story...told by a master storyteller.

There really isn't a weak song on the album. "Rolling In The Deep" and "Turning Tables" and "Don't You Remember" and "I'll Be Waiting" are all slightly more outstanding than the rest but the whole thing is very, very strong.

In my opinion, two songs stand apart: "Set Fire To The Rain" and "Someone Like You". Hard to say which I like more. The energy of "Set Fire To The Rain" is is the emotion of "Someone Like You". If you have no interest in the whole album, at least get these two songs. No, I mean right now, go get them. I'll wait.

Okay, got them? Good. Go listen to them. And when you're done, come back and get the whole album. And when you've listened to that, come back and write a review, because we need to let the world know about this. In a musical landscape where empty noise usually wins the day (Lady Gaga? Justin Bieber?), Adele's "21" stands as a throwback to the days when artists actually cared about the product they put out, rather than simply trying to "cash in" on whatever the popular fad of the day happens to be.
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144 of 163 people found the following review helpful By Colin C. Gauvin on March 1, 2011
Format: Audio CD
It's so refreshing to hear a talented artist (finally) instead of the likes of Katy Perry and Lady Gaga. Rather than a distorted voice, and practically naked (and weird) music videos, Adele refreshes the music industry with a breathtaking voice, the likes of which haven't been heard in a long, long, long time.

The genre is quite varied. Some songs are soul influenced, others maybe more pop, or even rock. The main thing is, though, they are all fantastic! I've never bought any music I've enjoyed as much as this. I purchased this on the Zune Marketplace 3 days after it was released, having never heard of her. I already have over 600 plays of it, and it's been something like 4/5 days since.

True talent is such a gift in todays music, when everything isn't filled with profanity and distortion. To find a low-key gift like this truly is a blessing.
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How come Adele is listed under ROCK????
surely you have better questions on your mind than that.
Feb 6, 2012 by icecube |  See all 4 posts
"21" is GREAT, "fuller" than "19", sorta like a 21st century "Dusty In Memphis", a UK take on American country/soul, or southern soul, even in the realm of a British Kelly Clarkson, but not in's as if "Chasing Pavements" was spread out... Read More
Feb 20, 2011 by Larry Davis |  See all 9 posts
cds that we love that most people may never have heard of
Great item, Joe. Here are some:

From the past:
Tonio K: Life in the Foodchain. Genius. I have never seen it on CD, but I still have copies in black vinyl and green vinyl.
Graham Parker and the Rumour: Squeezing Out Sparks.
Dead Boys: All, but especially Sonic Reducer and Son of Sam. ... Read More
Nov 22, 2011 by 9wt |  See all 8 posts
digital download bonus w/vinyl purchase
I've had the same problem and tried contacting Columbia/XL for assistance with this. Really frustrating.
Mar 3, 2012 by M. YORK |  See all 4 posts
y is this still number 1?
It's number one because people are still buying it!!!!, and just because it is popular it doesn't make it over rated. it's either enjoyed or it's not. It is obviously enjoyed, by many.
Feb 14, 2012 by KBL |  See all 8 posts
Can I play the CD in my car? Be the first to reply
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