Adele - 25
Critic Score
Based on 38 reviews
2015 Ratings: #394 / 909
Year End Rank: #18
User Score
Based on 707 ratings
2015 Ratings: #370
Liked by 22 people
November 20, 2015 / Release Date
LP / Format
XL / Label
Soul, Pop, Pop Soul / Genres
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Rolling Stone

Whether she's holding notes with the strength of a suspension bridge or enjoying a rare lighthearted "whoo-hoo!" on "Sweetest Devotion," her incredible phrasing – the way she can infuse any line with nuance and power – is more proof that she's among the greatest interpreters of romantic lyrics.

Entertainment Weekly

Her voice is a national monument, a ninth wonder; whatever she chooses to wrap it around is transformed and taken over.

A.V. Club

Her music feels authentic because, as a listener, you believe that these songs about love, pain, fear, and loss come from somewhere real and personal. On 25, she once again has something to say, with a voice that demands to be heard.

The 405

25 is a saviour record for a quarter life crisis, a sing-a-long for one of life's most difficult stages. While one of the world's most talented voices questions her purpose, her past and her future, may we feel a little more comforted while we do the same.

To listen is to immerse and revel and emerge more alive.
The Line of Best Fit

While it never really gels musically in quite the way you want it to ... it still has Adele at the heart of everything. Her voice remains a vehicle for her personality and is immune to the album’s few low points. It's so good to have her back.


On 25, the material is occasionally inspired, sometimes dull, but always serviceable -- and with Adele, that’s enough.


Even as she's suffering the romantic disadvantage, Adele infuses the songs of 25 with a love-drunk cockiness, tossing wine by a loose wrist as she reconsiders these departed men.

Under The Radar

By daring to go big—and remembering when to keep things small—Adele has recorded the most assured mainstream pop record of the year.

Pretty Much Amazing

25 is not a bad album, nor is it an excellent one — it’s just good, that’s all. Given her towering accomplishments, Adele doesn’t need to do much more than gift listeners with the glory of her magnificent voice.

Consequence of Sound

25 doesn’t necessarily meet the fire of its predecessor, but it meets its mark — a whole different undertaking when tasked from the top.

Regardless of how one might feel about the spiritual utility of pop music, Adele’s instincts as a singer remain unmatched; she is, inarguably, the greatest vocalist of her generation, an artist who instinctively understands timbre and pitch, when to let some air in. It does not seem unfair to ask that dynamism of her songs, too.

Adele is a singular talent, and the moments of brilliance are well worth wading through the few flashes of average.


These are mostly decent songs but the lyrical landscape feels wearily well-trodden and it’s hard not to just want a bit more from an artist with the freedom to risk anything.

American Songwriter

The finished product here seems like an attempt to up the ante on the drama and showstopping that permeated 21.


It's that refusal to commit to anything completely edgy that will keep 25 at the top of the charts and in the stocking of every kid, parent and grandparent everywhere, even if the snobs don't buy in.


All 11 songs are of a piece—they're all shaded melancholy gaining most of their power through performance—but that cohesive sound only accentuates how Adele has definitively claimed this arena of dignified heartbreak as her own.


This is the sound of someone playing the game so safely they might as well have strapped on shin-pads and a crash helmet.

Slant Magazine

25 is, like its predecessor, weighed down by its soggy, vanilla ballads, few of which manage to escape their '70s- and '80s-indebted singer-songwriter schmaltz the way “Hello” (just barely) does.

The Guardian

25’s big issue is that, in every sense, it dwells a little too heavily on the past.

Next time round it’ll be good to hear her break out of that comfort zone: while she’s earned the right to stick to that tried and trusted formula, a little bit of experimentation could go a long way.

Adele and her collaborators clearly seem to understand what the world wants from her — giant, tear-out-your-heart (and maybe your hair) songs that provide the same kind of sobby emotional wallop of, say, watching The Fault in Our Stars while eating a tub of ice cream and looking through old high-school yearbooks.


‘25’ is as straight-down-the-line ‘Adele album’ as it gets. Adele could’ve done whatever she bloody well liked at this stage – it’s a bit of a shame to see her so content to settle into old habits


Never one for youthful giddiness, her third album is strikingly authoritative, tending towards the imperious even when expressing vulnerability yet rarely coming over as soullessly efficient.

Time Out London

The fact that Adele has eschewed reinvention this time around, and instead tried to make a whole album of ‘Someone Like You’s, is a shame.

Drowned in Sound

Safe as houses, emotionally manipulative, a touch depressing and entirely forgettable, this is a dreary lesson in how to manage expectations.

NOW Magazine

25 is a clear attempt to cash in on the success of its mega-selling predecessor by dealing in heartbreak.

It’s pretty crazy how I’ve heard at least half of these songs in the past without actively seeking any of them out. It just goes to show how big of an impact Adele has on the music industry. That being said, I’m not a particularly big fan of this album. It sounds totally fine, sometimes even great, but this isn’t really my cup of tea.
International pop superstar Adele justifies the massive sales numbers that she makes on her third LP, 25. When judging this album on what it is, a mainstream pop record that is made to sell millions, I was very surprised by the quality of the project. I came in expecting a single-centered, filler-heavy album like 21, but 25 is a much more mature and focused album than it's predecessor. There are slow and emotional piano ballads (When We Were Young) and some all out pop chart toppers (Send ... read more
A massive step down from 21. This album feels like Adele has just become a generic pop singer and has lost most of what made her songwriting feel like it has emotion.

Best Track: When We Were Young
Worst Track: Water Under The Bridge
It doesn't quite stand at the same caliber as '21', but nonetheless, '25' is still an enjoyable pop record with some a few fantastic tracks.

Strong 6/10

*500th Rating!*
This album is far more catchier than 21 but sadly lacks the lyrical depth that made 21 great. Even though this album isn't as mature as 21 it is a great listen and a notable release of 2015.
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Track List

  1. Hello
  2. Send My Love (To Your New Lover)
  3. I Miss You
  4. When We Were Young
  5. Remedy
  6. Water Under the Bridge
  7. River Lea
  8. Love in the Dark
  9. Million Years Ago
  10. All I Ask
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Added on: October 22, 2015