Adele’s untitled fourth studio album is the follow-up album to her 2015 release, 25. Originally expected to be released in September 2020, the album has been delayed as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.


At a show in Belfast during her Adele Live 2016 tour, Adele mentioned the possibility of debuting new material toward the tour’s conclusion[1], indicating a potentially shorter break between albums, though this never came to fruition. She did, however, record a studio version of her arrangement of George Michael’s “Fastlove” that was rumored to be released in December of 2017.[2] Though a snippet of the recording appeared in George Michael: Freedom, a documentary dedicated to the late musician, the full song was never released.

In the program for the finale dates of her 2016–2017 world tour at Wembley Stadium, Adele revealed that she may never tour again.[3] She initially had four concerts planned at the venue, which were rumored to be used for a tour DVD, but the final two performances were cancelled after Adele suffered damage to her vocal cords.[4] The dates were not rescheduled.

Following the cancellation of Adele’s final two performances, she fell silent on social media. Her agent Lucy Dickins released a statement to Music Week, reassuring reporters that Adele’s statement on her touring future was not definitive.[5]

In March 2019, Adele visited a drag bar in New York with friend Jennifer Lawrence, during which she told those in attendance, “I’m working,” presumably in reference to new music.[6] A few days later, she was spotted entering a recording studio in New York, seemingly confirming reports that she was working on a new album.[7]

The following month, Adele announced her separation from husband Simon Konecki[8], prompting speculation that their breakup would inspire new music. On her 31st birthday, Adele seemingly alluded to these rumors in a post on Instagram: “Bunch of fucking savages, 30 will be a drum and bass record to spite you.”[9] The Sun later reported that Adele’s fourth album would be more upbeat, including an uptempo song that was being considered for her comeback single.[10]

In June 2019, Adele’s agent Lucy Dickins confirmed that she was writing new material for a new album, but that “we’re definitely not in a [touring] situation yet.”[11]


Shortly after the conclusion of her tour, it was rumored that Adele’s fourth studio album would be delayed because she was “too happy.”[12] In July 2018, reports indicated that Adele had begun work on the album and was aiming for a Christmas 2019 release.[13] The following month, Roger Friedman of Showbiz411 — who previously broke news regarding Adele’s recording of both “Skyfall” and “Fastlove” — reported that she was eyeing a 2019 release date for her next album.[14] A later report claimed that enough progress was being made on the album for it to be released earlier than anticipated, specifically mentioning summer 2019, but reiterated that it would ultimately be completed on Adele’s own terms.[15]

In September 2018, after XL Recordings owner Richard Russell was asked about the risks Adele might take on her next album, he replied with, “She’s already worked that out.”[16]

In January 2019, Hits Daily Double teased Adele’s potentially forthcoming return to music.[17] The cover story for People’s September 16, 2019 issue was an exclusive report claiming that Adele was “getting ready both mentally and physically to promote new music,” which would most likely be released later in the year.[18] The following year, Hits Daily Double reported that there were industry rumors of Adele’s return to music in 2020.[19]

In a January 2020 interview, Lucy and Jonathan Dickins confirmed new music from Adele should be expected later in the year.[20] While performing at her best friend Laura Dockrill’s wedding, Adele said the album would be released in September.[21] However, Dickins later retracted these statements, confirming that work on the album had been delayed as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.[22] Adele reaffirmed this in a comment on Instagram after being asked about an imminent album release, writing, “Of course it’s not. Corona ain’t over. I’m quarantining. Wear a mask and be patient.”[23]


Early on in the promotion for 25, Adele revealed that she planned to stop naming albums after her age.

“I feel like how I feel about myself is maybe how I’ll feel forever now,” she said in an interview with Zane Lowe. “I changed my opinions on things, changed my feelings of myself and other people and stuff. But I feel like the idea of calling albums after my age is showing a photograph almost of what’s going on in my life then and there. I feel like not that much is going to change profoundly in me from now on in terms of how important eras of my life are to myself. So I think the next one will probably be called Adele. It will be, I’m not joking.”[24]

She further alluded to her next release being self-titled during her “Carpool Karaoke” segment on The Late Late Show with James Corden.[25]

On her 31st birthday, Adele published a rare social media post in which she jokingly referred to her next album as 30, referring to the theme of her previous three albums’ titles.[9]

Possible songs and collaborations Edit

During the conception of 25, Adele wrote enough material for what she claimed could be three or four albums.[26] She later revealed that she had four or five songs she might revisit at a later date, among them a Greg Kurstin-contributed song that she felt was more appropriate once she was older.

I feel like I’m a bit young tossing it right now, but it’s a really great, great song. It’s like Celine [Dion] meets Meat Loaf meets, like, Barbra [Streisand] meets, like, Beyoncé or something. It’s, like, all of my wet-dream idols [laughs]. But it’s really, really great, actually. We didn’t finish it in time, and also it just felt like maybe I should be, like, 32 when I do it rather than 27? And there’s definitely four or five other songs that I would definitely revisit. And it depends what place I’m at in my life, then. It might be completely irrelevant to me, then. I don’t want to put a song on the record just because it’s good if I can’t relate to it.[27]

Multiple collaborations with songwriter Diane Warren were also cut from 25. Recorded at RAK Studios in northwest London, most of their collaborations were written and completed by early 2014.[28][29][30] Despite this, Warren mentioned the possibility of some of the songs appearing on future albums, telling Entertainment Weekly, “I did some songs with Adele that she still loves. Hopefully they’ll find their way onto her next album. We did some songs early in the process for 25. But I ran into her and she was like, ‘I still love those songs. I still want them. Don’t give them away.’ And they’re really good songs. Two, I think, are great.”[31]

Additionally, collaborations with Paul Epworth and Greg Wells, titled “Saviour” and “Devil on My Shoulder,” respectively, have been considered for future release after both were cut from 21.[32][33][34]

In April 2019, there were reports that Adele had been seen at singer Taylor Swift’s house with recording equipment, fueling speculation that they were collaborating on new music.[35] A source close to Swift later denied the reports.[36]

According to a report from The Sun, Adele has already had studio sessions with returning collaborators Mark Ronson, Ryan Tedder, Paul Epworth and Jim Abbiss for her forthcoming album.[10] Tedder later seemingly confirmed rumors that he had been in the studio with Adele, teasing, “I’ll just say that she sounds better than ever.”[37]

Later reports indicated that Adele was also working with John Legend and Raphael Saadiq in hopes of crafting an album “full of soul, with a more eclectic sound.”[38]


  1. Brawl breaks out at Adele concert | Toronto Sun
  2. Nozzaaaaaa on Twitter: "Said on the radio today she is releasing it in December 😊… "
  3. Adele: ‘I Don’t Know If I’ll Ever Tour Again’ – Rolling Stone
  4. Adele cancels final shows after hinting she’s done touring – CNN
  5. Adele’s agent speaks out on her touring future – ‘Let her enjoy life’ | Music | Entertainment |
  6. Adele Teases Comeback: "I'm Working" – That Grape Juice
  7. Adele Spotted Going Incognito at Recording Studio |
  8. Rep: Adele, husband Simon Konecki have separated — Associated Press
  9. 9.0 9.1 Adele Got Candid About Her Tough Year And Announced New Music In A Beautiful Instagram Post — BuzzFeed
  10. 10.0 10.1 Adele is swerving trademark ballads and relaunching her career with an up-tempo ‘banger’ about her divorce – The Sun
  11. Super agent Lucy Dickins talks breaking artists | Live | Music Week
  12. Adele is too happy to write her new album | Metro News
  13. Hello singer Adele starts work on songs for her first album in three years
  14. Record Biz Chaos: Sony’s Columbia Records, Hitless for Most of the Year, Pays Millions to Unknown Rapper, Loses a Top Exec | Showbiz411
  15. 2019 to be Adele of a year | Daily Star
  16. Richard Russell on Adele's future and what it takes to get signed to XL Recordings – NME
  17. HITS Daily Double: Rumor Mill – THE BRITISH ARE COMING
  18. Inside Adele's Life After Divorce — and Plans for New Music |
  19. HITS Daily Double : Rumor Mill - A MASSIVE YEAR ON THE HORIZON?
  20. [1]Dickins family talk Adele at Eurosonic Noorderslag music conference | Talent | Music Week
  21. Adele Says Fans Can Expect a New Album in September | |
  22. Jonathan Dickins talks music in lockdown | Management | Music Week
  23. Adele wore her Glastonbury Festival dress to watch it and needs you to calm down about a new album - CNN
  24. Adele Says She’ll Ditch Naming Albums After Her Age | Billboard
  25. Adele Carpool Karaoke
  26. Adele Returns To Joe's Pub For Intimate iHeartRadio Album Premiere | iHeartRadio
  27. 17 Things You Learn Hanging Out With Adele – Rolling Stone
  28. More proof that a new Adele album is on the way? - BBC Newsbeat
  30. Diane Warren on the GRAMMYs Red Carpet 2014 | Billboard
  31. Diane Warren: Adele collaborations could make it onto '25' follow-up |
  32. Paul Epworth on Twitter: "@dspezi1 correct on the first two. He Won't Go is the other. A track called Saviour will see the light of day at some point too I'm sure."
  33. Greg Wells on Twitter: "@Adele just listened to "devil on my shoulder" it's crazzzzzy good."
  34. Greg Wells Talks Hit 'Greatest Showman' Soundtrack, Working With Adele, Katy Perry & More: Pop Shop Podcast | Billboard
  35. Is A Taylor Swift & Adele Collaboration On The Way? – Idolator
  36. Taylor Swift, Adele NOT Collaborating On New Music, Despite Reports – Gossip Cop
  37. Adele sounds ‘better than ever’ reveals collaborator OneRepublic’s Ryan Tedder ahead of her comeback – The Sun
  38. Adele reportedly working with Raphael Saadiq on new album – NME
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