Sunday, April 10, 2011

Song Review - Someone Like You by Adele

In addition to writing about albums or specific artists I thought that I would try something new.  I decided that I would write about specific songs.

Sometimes I’ll hear a song and I’ll want to write about it more than the entire album.  I realized this when writing the review of Adele’s 21 that I had more to say about the song “Someone Like You”.

Here is the song:

The song has an unusual structure. Beginning with the four bar piano intro, there is an eight bar verse followed by a four bar verse.  There is a four bar pre chorus then an eight bar chorus.  There is a four bar verse, followed by the four bar pre chorus then repeat of the eight bar chorus. A middle eight bridge is then followed by the eight bar chorus repeated.

Starting with a plaintive Piano Arpeggio, Adele starts singing to her ex lover who’s moved on. “I heard that your dreams came true, guess she gave you things I didn’t give to you”.

In the pre chorus she sings “I hate to show up out of the blue uninvited, but I couldn’t stay away, couldn’t fight it. I had hoped you’d see my face and that you’d be reminded that for me it isn’t over.”

Then the magnificent chorus. She starts out strong with the first two lines. “Never mind I’ll find someone like you. I wish nothing but the best for you too”.  Adele then goes up an octave, and to be honest not quite hitting the notes. “Don’t forget me, I beg, I’ll remember you saied: Sometimes it last in love and sometimes it hurts instead.”

Even though she doesn’t quite hit the right notes when she goes up an octave, it ends up being much more effective than it would have been if she did. It symbolizes and articulates what she’s feeling. When she performs it live she doesn’t go up the octave and while the song is still devastating, it doesn’t have the same impact as the studio version. I had originally heard a live version first and thought it was amazing. My jaw dropped when I heard the studio original.

This song is the culmination of Adele’s career to this point. It’s hard to imagine what she’ll do next.

1 comment:

  1. Completely agree, it is so disappointing when she doesn't go up the octave live! I keep looking for a YouTube clip of her doing it the way it is on the album. There was something extraordinary about it, perhaps BECAUSE she can't quite hit it. So expressive.