Screenshot: Jody Serrano / Gizmodo / Spotify
Deep down, most of us know that the order songs are listed in on an album actually matters. In the era of streaming, however, it’s easier than ever to skip around, especially with the advent of “shuffle” options. Yet, after a six-year hiatus, it was extremely important to Adele that fans listen to the songs on her new album, “30,” in order, so she decided to ask one of the biggest streaming platforms around for its help.
On Saturday, Adele revealed on Twitter that her only request for her new album, which premiered on Friday, was that Spotify remove the shuffle as the default option. The singer explained that this would allow music platforms to respect the work and intention of artists. On Sunday, Spotify’s shuffle option, the circle with the intertwined arrows, was gone from all of Adele’s albums on the platform, including “30.”
“This was the only request I had in our ever changing industry! We don’t create albums with so much care and thought into our track listing for no reason,” Adele wrote. “Our art tells a story and our stories should be listened to as we intended. Thank you Spotify for listening,” she said.
The music streaming platform, for its part, seemed happy to oblige the queen’s request (especially since she wasn’t asking the company to pay artists more or anything like that).
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“Anything for you,” Spotify responded.
Adele’s announcement was met by cheers by some on social media and scorn by others, who thought the singer had convinced Spotify to take away the shuffle option forever. That’s not true, though: You can still shuffle albums.
A quick review by Gizmodo of other artists’ albums (Ed Sheeran, BTS, Blackpink, Taylor Swift) on the platform also found that the shuffle option was gone and that albums were played in order by default. But we were still able to activate the shuffle option if we wanted to in the Spotify player while playing an individual song from an album.
Gizmodo reached out to Spotify on Sunday to ask for comment on the removal of shuffle as the default for albums, but we did not receive a response by the time of publication.
In a statement to Variety, Spotify said that it was excited to roll out a “new premium feature” (because apparently the ability not to shuffle is a feature?) that has long been requested by users and artists.
“For those users still wishing to shuffle an album, they can go to the Now Playing View and select the ‘shuffle’ toggle. As always, we will continue to iterate our products and features to create the best experiences for both artists and their fans.”