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It has been an unbearable four years littered with insipid Rita Oras and Meghan Trainors since Adele's 21 firmly solidified the grand British powerhouse as an unexpected and untouchable pop queen for the new decade.
But Adele's hardly been listless in the years since then. You might recall that she recorded the title track for some micro-budgeted little action movie called Skyfall and picked up an Oscar over the course of her pop culture victory march, which also coincided with the birth of her son.
Adele has returned this year to appease the fans for whom Sam Smith just really isn't enough and to drown out all the other pop poseurs with her upcoming November album 25, which, on the heels of 21 and 2008's 19, continues the Boyhood-esque documentation of Adele's evolution into adulthood, even though it appears she'll soon be ditching the age-title trend following her latest release.
Her first single "Hello" is actually not a Lionel Richie homage, but rather an emotionally-sweeping, lyrically-evocative ballad about lost love of the heart-wrenching variety that typifies the bulk of Adele's heartbreaking songbook and which nobody — nobody — working in music today pulls off with as much potency as the Artist Born Adele Laurie Blue Adkins.
Adele has even upped the prestige factor considerably for the single's debut by enlisting Canada's playfully divisive cinematic prodigy Xavier Dolan (Mommy, I Killed My Mother) to direct an intimate, sepia-toned, and technologically-innovative video for the track, complete with first-person flashbacks of a new love (played by The Wire's Tristan Wilds!) turned volatile and windswept, autumn-appropriate shots of Adele singing in a leafy forest, captured with IMAX cameras, a music video first!
Watch it here and prepare to hide the lump in your throat until you can safely make it to the bathroom and cry in peace. Sobbing in office bathroom stalls while hiding from judgy co-workers — that's the Power of Adele.