Adele’s ‘Hello’ sparks an obsession

26 Oct 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

We Need to Talk About the New Adele Album.

As I write this, the video for first single, “Hello,” has been viewed 69,453,001 times on YouTube, putting it on track to hit 100 million inside a week. And everyone is talking about Adele’s flip phone. (For more stunning stats, go here.) But let’s look a further down the road: will 25 be the last great hurrah of the album era? The much anticipated Adele album ‘25’ will go on sale on November 20thand its lead single ‘Hello’ hit the airwaves and Vevo today, with Adele doing an impressive number of near-simultaneous radio interviews in support.

With ’21’ having been such an event culturally and commercially (it has sold 30 million copies) expectations are understandably high for ‘25’. While we are a long, long way from music sales being a thing of the past (they’ll still represent 50% of recorded music revenue in 2020) there is no doubt that the glory days of blockbuster albums are on their way.

The industry’s attempt to compensate with ‘album equivalent sales’ in charts is a fudge that does more to make charts a reflection of streaming era ‘airplay’ than it does sales. The growing focus on genetically modified pop music by major labels is another temporary work around that will also ultimately fail to address the underlying issues.

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