Album Review: Norah Jones - Little Broken Hearts

30 April 2012 | 4:27 pm | Jason Kenny

It’s not faultless but it’s solid and impressive

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Norah Jones' last record waded into some pop territory with the catchy pop of Chasing Pirates. Moves like that might infuriate some, but to hell with them. She's one of the highest selling jazz artists of our times not because of any gimmicks but for her songwriting and her voice. She's could lend her hand to almost anything – alt. country, baroque pop, cabaret or just stick to jazz – and do it damn well. She wants to delve into Feist-like pop territory and she found her foil in Danger Mouse.

The record swings between the two. The opening track leans more towards Jones' previous releases, then the second comes in with those typical Danger Mouse sounding drums and melodies that wouldn't be out of place on that Broken Bells record. Between them they save the song from heading into some horrible pop territory – Danger Mouse with his style; Jones with her honesty and that voice. She's 22 is one of those rare gems with a simple chord progression, simple lyrics, simple production but cuts through you with its honesty. Take It Back brings in some more Broken Bells melodies, then rocks out but in a strictly minimalist way. Jones' time playing on Ryan Adams records shows its influence on Broke Hearts and Miriam.

It's a sparse and minimalist record. It's not faultless – Out On The Road is a weak point – but it's solid and impressive. If these two develop some sort of working relationship and deliver a few other records together then that will be something to really look forward to.