This is a singer. She melts like Billie. She coos and riffs like Ella. She falls apart and gets right back up like Petula.
The music, the chords, the piano and her veracity break us down. She is not just part of the third British Wave — as if the wave sweeps over the notes and crushes their singularity. Adele, daughter of a teenage mother, has an old soul, an all-soul, and it breaks across the scat, the phrasing, and the nostalgia.
Adele is too young to be nostalgic, but she is, and she lets us be for her, with her, and for our own past. But she’s not too young to feel solidarity, to feel the heat of oppression in the city, and she brings us to that place, that time, where we have our backs up against the wall with her, where we can be as one with the working class and their plight, our plight, our trial combined.
Home towns. Our troubled, shrinking, decimated sense of togetherness in the city of our dreams. Get back.