The 15-time Grammy winner introduced “To Be Loved,” a melancholy piano ballad, on her Twitter and Instagram accounts Wednesday afternoon. The low-quality footage appeared to have been shot in a living room on a cellphone.
Still, there was no denying the powerful vocals and impeccable musicality that have made Adele a global superstar without parallel.
Needless to say, fans were ecstatic.
“Adele’s ability to create new music that sounds like a song you’ve loved for 20 years without ever feeling recycled or like something you’ve heard from her before is truly astounding,” one person wrote. Added another, “Just found someone to date and then broke up with them so I could connect with this more deeply.”
“To Be Loved” will be featured on “30,” Adele’s first new album in six years, which is poised to offer listeners a peek into her post-divorce psyche. The first single, “Easy on Me,” was unveiled last month and shot to No. 1 in 25 countries. She previewed a second single, “I Drink Wine,” as part of “Adele: One Night Only,” a CBS special that featured live performances and an interview with Oprah Winfrey.
Critics who have been fortunate enough to hear “30” in its entirety prior to the album’s release Friday have called it Adele’s best work to date.
“There are many heirs to her throne, but Adele is still queen of the ugly-cry ballad,” Los Angeles Times critic Mikael Wood wrote. Vulture’s Craig Jenkins agreed, calling it “the music she should’ve been making all along.”
Still, from the sounds of it, “To Be Loved” might not become a permanent part of Adele’s concert repertoire. In an interview with Apple Music’s Zane Lowe this week, the singer said she “can’t even listen” to the track because of the emotional response it conjured.
“I have to leave the room,” she said. “I get really upset … . When I was writing it and singing it, I just envisioned [my 9-year-old son] Angelo being in his 30s. I guess I’ll sing it to him then.”