#10 LP of 2012: Norah Jones-"Little Broken Hearts"

This is the first time Ms. Jones had a big impact on my ears. “Happy Pills” jumped out of the speakers and spoke to me.  This song made me curious about the rest of this Dangermouse produced LP.  I have always enjoyed her voice, but the songwriting this time out seemed more contemporary.  I Spotified it and ended up loving the rest of the material.
Little Broken Hearts became a staple on my stereo this year.

“Happy Pills” feels like a theme song for the whole record, as it’s so upbeat, and well, happy.  Sort of like the day you realize you’re over that break up and life lies ahead of you.  Freedom, I guess, in a word.  That’s the feeling here throughout Little Broken Hearts.

“Good Morning” has the feeling of waking up from a great dream.  A sparse acoustic guitar gives way to a spacey keyboard melody that showcases Norah’s gorgeous vocals.

On “Little Broken Hearts” Norah reminds me of the female Chris Isaak, mysterious and soulful, wispy and sultry.  It has a swagger, and gallop that add a haunting backbone to a tale most of us have lived.

“Miriam” feels apprehensive and timid at first, but is saved by the subtle flourishes of her voice during the beautiful chorus.  Less is more is the motto here, and things are kept very hush with airy arrangements.  There’s poignancy and longing here, which at times offers a hint of hope.

Norah Jones stole my heart with this record.  She took some risks this time around, and tried new things stylistically.  She went against the grain, and not only did she succeed, she excelled.  Any newbie would dig this record, but for me this was a gateway to all her old records.  It’s way more contemporary and edgy than her previous releases.  After becoming hooked on Little Broken Hearts,  I found myself rescuing most of her earlier catalog them from the cut out bins.

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