21 - Adele
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21 Image
Metascore
76

Generally favorable reviews - based on 34 Critics What's this?

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7.5

Generally favorable reviews- based on 364 Ratings

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  • Summary: The British singer’s sophomore album is full of soul and pop rhythms, comparable to Amy Winehouse and Duffy.
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 26 out of 34
  2. Negative: 0 out of 34
  1. Jan 27, 2011
    100
    21 is simply stunning. After only a handful of plays, it feels like you've always known it.
  2. Mar 4, 2011
    90
    There's not a slacker in the bunch on 21, which is hard enough for many an artist to pull off at 31 – or even 51 – much less at an age when they're still too young to rent a car on their own
  3. Jan 27, 2011
    80
    A progressive, grown-up second collection, it ought to ensure Adele is around for 23, 25, 27 and beyond.
  4. Jun 14, 2011
    80
    Hearing a voice that grows scratchy and threatens to break and has not been tampered with, has not been slicked over in a studio, a voice that reveals all that can be found within a person and also seems to hold something back, to suggest another truth just behind the veil.
  5. Feb 1, 2011
    70
    For all of her posturing and ruminations on life, love and other such considerations, you may well ask yourself whether she is merely playing a part and recycling old themes or if she has the experience she so eloquently sings about.
  6. Apr 7, 2011
    70
    Her sound is undeniably more mature than what you would typically expect from a 21-year-old, but tracks like "Don't You Remember" make you wonder if the overall vibe is more mature than it should be.
  7. 40
    Things begin well enough with the single "Rolling in the Deep", with its thumping piano quadruplets and gospelly backing vocals, and continues reasonably with the galumphing Tom Waits-style arrangement of "Rumour Has It"; until, two-thirds of the way through the song, it grinds to a halt for a slower, torchy middle eight.

See all 34 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 72 out of 99
  2. Negative: 19 out of 99
  1. May 30, 2014
    10
    "21" marked the transition for Adele from well-known singer to international pop singer, and this album shows you why. The songs are just magnificent and her voice is just breathtakingly beautiful. Expand
  2. Nov 28, 2013
    10
    One of my favorite artists of all time, soulful, true to herself, genuine, moving, and every track is so enjoyable and wonderful, done with so much respect to original artists when a cover is done I love you Adele! Expand
  3. Mar 4, 2011
    10
    This is the best album of this year so far. All of the songs here are well-written and full of emotion that the audience can easily relate themselves to. With an instant classic and Grammy-nominated potential album like 21, I really cannot believe why it got only 76 points. All the mixed reviews are full of hatred and maybe the people who wrote those reviews need to check their definition of what is called " true music " ! Expand
  4. Jan 20, 2012
    8
    On her debut '19', Adele sounded like a childish confused brat but on '21' she delivers some really diverse and touching songs, strong, emotional lyrics and her matured, powerful voice. The production is miles ahead of her debut, making this sound more comfortable and less insecure than you could have imagined. Adele's tales of heartbreak are likely to reach out to many, but for now we can just celebrate how good a musician Adele has become. Expand
  5. Aug 5, 2012
    7
    I'm sorry with saying this, but '21' is overrated. 12 Songs: 6 songs very good, 6 songs only average. Her voice is fantastic, without a doubt. But honestly, this album could've been much better. Some songs are just too sketchy for me. Yeah, there are all sad love songs and that's also a thing that makes the disk a bit boring to me. Only rage against ex lovers that she still loves. Yeah, Miss Adkins, we've got it now. In other cases, only the music makes the song special. Best Songs:
    Turning Tables
    Rolling In The Deep
    Set Fire To The Rain

    Conclusion:
    This album is really good, don't misunderstand me, but you now, with her voice this could've been much better.
    Expand
  6. Feb 18, 2014
    5
    Adele is respectfully one of the most treasured artists of all time, but i wasn't too keen is album. Some tracks were soulful while the rest were moody, depressing and if I must say, 'boring' ballads. Not for me... Expand
  7. Nov 12, 2012
    0
    Morose, Dull, Uninspiring, Middle of the road, Non-offensive blandness. Of course everyone is drawn to her as shes a stripped down pseudo soul-pop singer who popped up as a counter to the over the top electro-pop trend, right place right time. Imagine if she released this album in the mist of the mid 00s when this stuff was all over the place, no one would bat an eyelid..much like her first album as a matter of fact.
    A great songwriter she is not (for one read the amount of songwriters credited on each song, not so personal as she claims) the lyrics are nothing that Alanis Morrisette or Liz Phair have done before, and Adeles lacking the punch and passion of the former. Instead were met with a collection of easy listening flat instrumentation with cliche break lyrics knitted to very standard Melody.
    Adele was among a batch of artists in the UK that came about after Amy Winehouses Back to Black had got big alongside Duffy and Gabrielle Cilmi, Adele timed her release just right and she filled the hole for when Amy Winehouse died to claim the throne of queen of the middle of the road pop. Not too cheesy to alienate parents, not too retro to alienate the teenagers. The music being artistically flat has no bearing on what people are looking for in Adele. Why have groundbreaking, experimental and challenging music when you have this teenage-white girl singing mature orientated songs? I think peoples admiration of her is more down to the fact that she lost a load of weight, rather than her raw lyrical output. Lets see where she is come release of her next album.
    Expand

See all 99 User Reviews

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