Adele: A Rising Star Keeps Rising

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"Don't underestimate the things that I will do," Adele sings in "Rolling in the Deep." It's good advice. i

"Don't underestimate the things that I will do," Adele sings in "Rolling in the Deep." It's good advice. Courtesy of the artist hide caption

itoggle caption Courtesy of the artist
"Don't underestimate the things that I will do," Adele sings in "Rolling in the Deep." It's good advice.

"Don't underestimate the things that I will do," Adele sings in "Rolling in the Deep." It's good advice.

Courtesy of the artist

Tuesday's Pick

Song: "Rolling in the Deep"

Artist: Adele

CD: 21

Genre: Pop

When Adele broke out two years ago as one of the rising stars of English neo-soul, she separated herself by emphasizing her huge, booming pipes — as opposed to a rocky personal life (see Amy Winehouse) or pin-up looks (see Duffy). Music has remained the primary focus, and Adele's honest, genuine songs about love and heartbreak helped her break through in the U.S. She even scored a 2009 Grammy for Best New Artist.

For her new album, 21 (due out in February), Adele has said in interviews that she's been inspired by American music, specifically contemporary Nashville bands like Lady Antebellum and rockabilly icon Wanda Jackson. While that may be reflected on the rest of her record, Adele's stunning lead single hews closer to Phil Spector and Motown-era pop, with dense, Wall of Sound-style production and soulful backup vocalists who evoke The Supremes.

It helps that Adele has matured beyond the lovelorn persona behind her past hit songs, such as "Chasing Pavements." In "Rolling in the Deep," she vows revenge on an ex-lover: "Don't underestimate the things that I will do," she sings. To anyone thinking of breaking this soul singer's heart, consider it fair warning.

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