REVIEW: @Adele @GentingArena #Birmingham 30 March 2016
The question is, how do you review an Adele gig? How many superlatives that have already been used to describe her success can one review contain? Well, let’s be objectionable – or at the very least, try.
Let me take you back to September 2011, and the Cardiff gig that never was. Adele had a bad cold and cancelled both that night and her gig in Blackpool, meaning one very disappointed Poptart (i.e. Me). Fast forward to December 2015 and she announces she would be touring 25, but the question on everyone’s lips – well, mine and a couple of thousand Welsh people, would a Cardiff gig be part of the tour?
Well, that aside and the huge demand online when the tickets went on sale, I managed to get some tickets for my friends and I for the Genting Arena in Birmingham, suddenly I was Mr Popular.
So how would a night in the presence of Miss Adkins turn out after all this time? I know sometimes gig reviews tend to spoil some of the surprises of the night, and as much as I can I won’t. But in saying that, even if you do know the set list, an Adele gig isn’t about special effects, set or costume changes – it’s about the sound and how her music makes you feel.
It’s never going to be a big on dancing kind of night – even by her own admission several times, but some gigs aren’t about dancing – they’re about how you connect to the song and how it makes you feel. For this Adele’s back catalogue could probably feature in the soundtrack to most people’s lives whether that’s heartache or reminiscing. There will always probably be one song that reminds you of a time in your life, her lyrics are that good – oh, and her choice of the odd cover version is genius too (Dylan’s Feel my love).
There are no clever tricks, it’s just a woman, a Mother’s Day mug full of a hot drink (no caffeine though since that dries out your vocal chords – thanks Adele!), and a lot of chat in between songs. This is where many artists fail. Now whether you like that kind of thing is another thing, but she’s there with the likes of Buble and Robbie. She’s funny, charming and if you so happen to be in her eye line, you’re very likely to be talked to, and for example at the Genting, she’s likely to pull you up on stage for a selfie – yes, an actual selfie with Adele.
So what did we learn from the gig? Apart from Adele likes to chat, we also learnt she was part Welsh, visits Penarth a fair bit, and her family were coming from Llantwit Major on Saturday to see the gig. There was also mention of her previous gigs in Wales – Buffalo bar in 2007 (when 90 people saw her), and St Davids Hall in April 2008 which was (her words) half full. You’d think we all the Welsh connections, some kind of effort would’ve been made to do a Welsh leg of the tour? Anyway, I digress (big time!). She also won an iHeartRadio award for Best Song for Hello (and did the acceptance speech live on stage.
A couple of standout moments of the night include hearing Skyfall, Feel my love and Someone like you. But can’t fail to not mention When we were young, a song without that, according to Adele, 25 wouldn’t have been released.
If I had to use just three words to describe the night they’d be “faultless, fun & emotional”. Until the next time Miss Adkins (in Wales? Maybe the Paget Rooms in Penarth, you could do a residency?)
One and Only
Rumour Has It
Water Under the Bridge
I Miss You
Million Years Ago
Don’t You Remember
Send My Love (to Your New Lover)
Make You Feel My Love
Someone Like You
Set Fire to the Rain
All I Ask
When We Were Young
Rolling in the Deep
Review by Patrick Downes
At the time of writing (2246GMT on 30/10/11) there are rumours flying around social media regarding Adele and the reasons to why she cancelled the rest of her appearances & gigs in 2011.
I won’t fan the flame of these rumours, but needless to say I hope their not true. If you wish to find out the rumour, search #prayforadele on Twitter.
If you wish to read the facts, check HER website out – and stop believing all the rumour.
Guys, im heartbroken and worried to tell you that yet again im experiencing problems with my voice. its ridiculous i know! i cant believe it myself. i follow all the advice im given and stick to regimes, rules and practices to the best of my ability but it seems to simply not be enough. i want you to know the full story about my voice troubles so bare with me in this long blog. i first started having trouble with my voice back in january, it was weakened by a bout of flu from december and never got its complete strength back before i started my UK and European promotional tour, so it just got weaker and weaker until it eventually “broke” as i say. i didnt realise at the time, cause id never had anything wrong with my voice, ever. but id also never sung as much as i was at the time it went. i was diagnosed with laryngitis and ordered to rest intensely for 10 days, and i recovered and went on to do a show in london and a month long promo tour in the U.S and also the brit awards without any hiccups. the whole time i stuck to a strict regime of numerous diets, steaming, vocal rest and vocal warm ups. which is very necessary but insanely grim. After a bit of time off I embarked on my european and UK tours at the end of march and finished at the end of april and everything seemed fine.
in may i went on tour in the U.S, i was in minneapolis which was about half way through the tour. i made a skype call in the morning on the day of the show and during it my voice suddenly switched off like a light! it was literally as if someone pulled a curtain over my throat. i knew something was wrong and panicked but convinced myself id be fine. i got to soundcheck and knew immediately i couldnt perform and with doctors advice cancelled the show. i was mortified and distraught but stubbornly insisted we go to denver for the following day, i did the show even though in the back of mind i knew it wasnt the right thing to do. and during it i felt, what i can only describe as something ripping in my throat. but adrenalin kicked in and i was too embarrassed to not finish the show. I was sent to LA to rest and get another opinion. this time i was diagnosed with a hemorrhage. which is like a black eye on the vocal chord, it was incredibly tender and dangerous if i was to continue to sing through it. i was ordered to rest, so i flew home and did for a month. then slowly i started fulfilling my commitments. i did a show in london at the itunes festival and then went on to complete the first leg of the rescheduled US shows and perform at the VMAS which were all a blinding success.
however when i got home and prepared to start my UK tour in september i developed a respiratory and chest infection which had nothing to do with any of my voice problems from before but still forced me to cancel 6 shows and a performance at the mercury awards. i was stuffed full of antibiotics, had some time to rest and in the end managed to do 9 shows of the 15. After them and once back home my voice yet again went. mid conversation and it just switched off! i have a hemorrhage again and it is paramount that i rest and therefore wont be able to come and do these already rescheduled U.S shows which are due to start this friday in atlantic city.
the fact is i have never been able to fully recover from any of the problems that ive had and then continue to rest even once im recovered, because of my touring commitments. ive been offered the chance to not tour at all to save anything like this from happening again, but i simply hate letting you down. although now im having to let you down once again through no fault of my own really. if i continue to pick up everything before i have properly conquered these problems and nipped them in the bud. i will be totally and utterly fucked. singing is literally my life, its my hobbie, my love, my freedom and now my job. I have absolutely no choice but to recuperate properly and fully, or i risk damaging my voice forever. i have great confidence in believing you know how much this upsets me, how seriously i take it and how truly devastated and annoyed i am by this. wanting to do something so bad and not being able to is the most frustrating thing as im sure you know! my voice is weak and i need to build it back up. I’m gonna be starting up vocal rehab as soon as, and start building my over all stamina in my voice, body and mind. i will be back and im gonna smash the ball out the park once im touring again. i apologise from the bottom of my heart, sincerely i do. i know its not only disappointing because of the show, but its plane tickets, hotel bookings, birthdays, anniversaries and time wasted. but please have faith in me that this is the only thing i can do to make sure i can always sing and always make music for you to the best of my ability. truly yours and yours only forever, adele xx
Now, if you’ve got tickets for the rescheduled dates in the UK (myself included – November 14th Cardiff) – should we now be concerned…maybe a little…?
I’ll bet most people saw the heading for this blog and crapped their pants….chillax, it’s the US dates that have been affected (again)
Just wondering, I know it’s her health that’s important, but you do have to wonder whether she’s been pushed too hard?
We’ve featured Hobbie on this blog previous. His voice is just amayzing! Check out his cover of Adele’s Rolling in the deep
You’ll have seen this guy on the blog before, this time he’s covered Adele’s Someone like you… Just awesome