Adele has suggested her upcoming album and first release since 2015 is an attempt to explain her divorce from Simon Konecki to her 9-year-old son. "I was just going through the motions and I wasn't happy," the 33-year-old singer told Vogue for November's cover story. "Neither of us did anything wrong. Neither of us hurt each other or anything like that. It was just: I want my son to see me really love, and be loved." She "sells the concept" with 30's lead single "Easy on Me"—"a tearjerker about forgiveness instead of a fight," writes Jason Lipshutz at Billboard.
The song, which dropped in full on Thursday, has "the hallmarks of the British superstar's best-selling brand of pop" including "the stately piano-and-vocals intro of 'Hello,' the extended chorus syllables of 'Someone Like You,' the subtle yet crucial bridge placement of 'When We Were Young,'" Lipshutz writes. But it delivers "a new kind of raw power," with a voice that's "as soulful an instrument as exists in modern music.' "She's back and she's still sublime," reads a headline at the Evening Standard, where Jochan Embley notes "it's hard to remember Adele ever sounding better than this."
"Even if you find The Stuff That Adele Does miserable, you'd have your work cut out arguing that her vocal during the final bridge is anything other than fantastic," writes Alexis Petridis at the Guardian. "You can't deny how hard I've tried, I changed who I was to put you both first—but now I give up," sings Adele, who's moved from the UK to California, married, and divorced in the six years since the release of her last album, 25. In a statement announcing the release of her new album on Nov. 19, the singer says she's "finally found my feeling again. I'd go so far as to say that I've never felt more peaceful in my life." (Read more Adele stories.)