The Bottom Line
Because it doesn't contain quite the epic power of "Rolling In the Deep" or "Someone Like You," it is easy to feel perhaps a bit let down with Adele's next single "Set Fire To the Rain." However, that simple assessment would miss some truly notable elements of the song. The lyrics are moving, and the sweeping orchestration carries us right into the heart of Adele's pain.
- Powerful lyrics
- Sweeping string orchestration underlined by driving beats
- Just slightly below the quality of previous singles
- Written by Adele Adkins and Fraser T. Smith
- Produced by Fraser T. Smith
- Released December 2011 by Columbia Records
Guide Review - Adele - "Set Fire To the Rain"
"Set Fire To the Rain" opens with a simple piano and vocal like "Someone Like You." However, it is not long before strings and percussion appear. The chorus introduces a sweeping orchestration that effectively builds throughout the song as the emotional anguish in the lyrics deepens. "Set Fire To the Rain" explores the end of a relationship with an interesting twist. Adele identifies wrongdoing from her partner, but then she recognizes her own response in which she "set fire to the rain" ensuring the end of the relationship.
Adele's songwriting and production partner here is Fraser T. Smith. He knows his way around orchestration underlining an emotional ballad as ably demonstrated in his recent work on Leona Lewis' cover of Nine Inch Nails' "Hurt." However, "Set Fire To the Rain" never completely gives way to the soaring strings, but instead is continuously propelled forward by relentless percussive beats. The piano becomes prominent again as the song nears its sudden end.
"Set Fire To the Rain" has been a top 10 hit around the world including the US. Following in the footsteps of its predecessors from the album 21, "Set Fire To the Rain" is a hit across multiple formats in the US. It has reached the top 40 on dance, rock, and adult pop radio formats. Don't miss this crushing power ballad that continues the powerful reign of one of the top pop albums of all time.