Live photos: Adele at United Palace
Mon May 23 2011
Photograph: Lizz Kuehl
Adele's between-song banter is a force to be reckoned with in itself: When she's not singing, the 23-year old British star is chirpy and chatty, one minute pointing out her mom ("Mummy!") in the audience, the next, speaking frankly about the boy who broke her heart and inspired her chart-busting album, 21. That stuff is great, as is the fact that Adele actually looks like a woman—it matches the richness and depth of her songs. But of course, what captivates about Adele is her voice; an exquisite, supple thing that she employs sparingly, without the wibbly histrionics of lesser singers. She sings honestly, and her stripped-down rendition of "Someone Like You" at the end of Saturday's performance at the United Palace Theater was heart-stallingly lovely. An audience member thrust a bouquet of flowers at the singer, who had returned for her encore having ditched her high heels. She looked thrilled. Having killed it with a rousing rendition of "Rollin' in the Deep" (her final number), Adele skipped offstage, high-fiving a backup singer.