Norah Jones “The Fall” review

Norah has taken a new direction on the The Fall, experimenting with different sounds and a new set of collaborators, including Jacquire King, a noted producer and engineer who has worked with Kings of Leon, Tom Waits and Modest Mouse. Read our review

Norah Jones

Artist: Norah Jones
Title: The Fall
Label: Blue Note
Rating: 6.5/10

Corporate Line: Norah has taken a new direction on the The Fall, experimenting with different sounds and a new set of collaborators, including Jacquire King, a noted producer and engineer who has worked with Kings of Leon, Tom Waits and Modest Mouse. Jones enlisted several songwriting collaborators, including Ryan Adams and Okkervil River’s Will Sheff, as well as her frequent partners Jesse Harris & Richard Julian. Musicians include drummers Joey Waronker (Beck, R.E.M.) and James Gadson (Bill Withers), keyboardist James Poyser (Erykah Badu, Al Green), and guitarists Marc Ribot (Tom Waits, Elvis Costello) and Smokey Hormel (Johnny Cash, Joe Strummer). The first single/video is for the album’s lead track ‘Chasing Pirates’.

1. Chasing Pirates – A Lovely song that isn’t far from the Norah Jones that fans have come to know and love. If anything, its quite accessible for those who might hear Jones for the very first time. [9/10]

2. Even Though – Where as “Chasing Pirates” lived in the Norah Jones of old it was also sexy and available to all–this song is a bit less so. It’s pretty–but can be a tad slow. [8/10]

3. Light As A Feather – Instead of that jazzy little singer, Jones sounds positively tough in an Aimee Mann sort of way. [7/10]

4. Young Blood – It doesn’t seem to bode well that this song could be mistaken for a number of singers. It’s missing something–a key ingrediant. Some cohesive piece that ties it into the rest of the album. [4/10]

5. I Wouldn’t Need You – The husky voice and somber tone are back and its a place Jones should never leave. [6/10]

6. Waiting – Simple, maybe too simple. It’s a barren song with a bit too much twinkling and too little of Jones’ voice. [5/10]

7. It’s Gonna Be -It’s good to hear Jones get out of her comfort zone. Too bad she shot so far out of her zone that she overshot into something that sounds a bit uncomfortable. [5/10]

8. You’ve Ruined Me – Devoid of soul. Boring. [4/10]

9. Back To Manhattan – Jones finally finds her groove once again and sucks you back into her beautifully soulful voice. [7/10]

10. Stuck – This isn’t as far out of her comfort zone as “Young Blood”–and doesn’t sound nearly as confused or painful. However, the guitar solo could have been left somewhere far behind. [6/10]

11. December – Certainly a pretty track–but it’s almost too slow. There is something nearly painful about how far Jones has to drag out each and every syllable. [6/10]

12. Tell Yer Mama – A bit too falsely southern for even Jones, who can seemingly slip-in-and-out of any skin. [6/10]

13. Man of the Hour – Jones may not be able to choose between “a vegan and a pothead” but she did choose a good song. It’s sad that this was saved until last when it could have surely boosted up the middle of the album. It’s proof positive that Jones still has such a strong jazz soul and that perhaps it was her biggest mistake stepping out of that. [8/10]

Frankly: Norah Jones is a great. But that doesn’t mean every song she writes/sings is great. But Jones is always good for a handful of great tracks. “Chasing Pirates” and “Man of the Hour” stand out. The rest is mostly hit or miss. Unlike albums in Jones’ past, “The Fall” isn’t nearly cohesive enough. If only “The Fall” could have found a foothold in “Chasing Pirates.”

Norah Jones to release “The Fall” on November 17

Norah Jones "The Fall"Multiple Grammy Award-winning singer and songwriter Norah Jones will release The Fall, her fourth studio album on Blue Note Records on November 17, 2009. Jones wrote nearly all of the songs in the past two years since completing tours in support of her 2007 global chart-topping, U.S. double-platinum album Not Too Late.

Beloved by fans for her sultry vocals and jazz-informed, piano-driven pop songwriting, Jones has taken a new direction on The Fall, seeing it as a chance to experiment with different sounds and an opportunity to work with a new set of collaborators, including Jacquire King, a noted producer and engineer who has worked with Kings of Leon, Tom Waits, and Modest Mouse among others. Jones also enlisted several songwriting collaborators, including Ryan Adams and Okkervil River’s Will Sheff, as well as her frequent partner Jesse Harris.

“I knew I wanted to try some different things on this album,” Jones says. “I’d been playing with the same musicians for a long time. We’re all still friendly and I hope we play together again, but it felt like a good time to work with new people and experiment with different sounds. As far as a producer, I wanted someone who could take me out of my comfort zone and find the right musicians to capture what I wanted to do with this collection of songs. I got in touch with Jacquire initially because he engineered one of my favorite records of all time, Tom Waits’ Mule Variations. He was really eager to do it and we got along really well, which was important.”

King helped Jones put together a new group of musicians to perform on the album, including drummers Joey Waronker (Beck, R.E.M.) and James Gadson (Bill Withers), keyboardist James Poyser (Erykah Badu, Al Green), and guitarists Marc Ribot (Tom Waits, Elvis Costello) and Smokey Hormel (Johnny Cash, Joe Strummer). Jones and King tailored the songs to the musicians’ strengths. “I think the record sounds different due to the variety of musicians we used,” Jones says, “I knew I wanted to play with grooves more than I have on previous albums. Some of these new songs lent themselves to having driving rhythms underneath.”

Another noticeable change on Jones’ upcoming album is that she plays mostly guitar. “I actually write more on guitar than I do on piano,” she says. “It just felt more natural for me to play it on these songs.”

Since coming on the scene in 2002, Jones’ has sold a collective 36 million albums worldwide. Her three studio albums, 2002’s eight-time Grammy Award-winning Come Away With Me, 2004’s Feels Like Home, and 2007’s Not Too Late have each topped the Billboard top 200 album charts in the U.S. and gone to No. 1 around the world. All three have been certified multi-platinum, while Come Away With Me has been certified diamond.

Since 2007, Jones has collaborated with a number of artists, including Herbie Hancock, Talib Kweli, Willie Nelson, Q-Tip, Irma Thomas, and Andy Samberg’s comedy troupe The Lonely Island. She has also contributed to various soundtracks, including Ken Burns’ The War, Ethan Hawke’s The Hottest State, and Wong Kar-wai’s My Blueberry Nights, as well as the Fats Domino tribute album Goin’ Home. In 2007, Jones starred opposite Jude Law in My Blueberry Nights and made a cameo in this year’s season finale of 30 Rock. Also this year, Jones was featured as a flagship artist on Apple’s GarageBand, presenting a tutorial on how to perform her song “Thinking About You.”

The track listing for The Fall is as follows:

1. Chasing Pirates (Norah Jones)

2. Even Though (Norah Jones/Jesse Harris)

3. Light As a Feather (Norah Jones/Ryan Adams)

4. Young Blood (Norah Jones/Mike Martin)

5. I Wouldn’t Need You (Norah Jones)

6. Waiting (Norah Jones)

7. It’s Gonna Be (Norah Jones)

8. You’ve Ruined Me (Norah Jones)

9. Back To Manhattan (Norah Jones)

10. Stuck (Norah Jones/Will Sheff)

11. December (Norah Jones)

12. Tell Yer Mama (Norah Jones/Jesse Harris/Richard Julian)

13. Man Of The Hour (Norah Jones)

Norah Jones announces new album “The Fall”

Norah Jones "The Fall"Multiple Grammy Award-winning singer and songwriter Norah Jones has announced the title and release date of her upcoming album, The Fall, her fourth studio album which will be released by EMI’s Blue Note Records on November 17. Jones has also revealed the cover artwork for the album, which features a portrait by photographer Autumn de Wilde.

Jones was the surprise guest performer at Apple’s “It’s Only Rock n’ Roll” press conference yesterday in San Francisco. Her breakout album Come Away With Me is one of the first albums to be released in the iTunes LP format, a new feature of iTunes 9 that reinvents the visual experience of the record album through live performance videos, lyrics, artwork, liner notes, interviews, photos, album credits and more. After being introduced by Apple CEO Steve Jobs, Jones performed “Come Away With Me” and also debuted “Young Blood,” a new song from The Fall.

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Jones has taken a new direction on the The Fall, experimenting with different sounds and a new set of collaborators, including Jacquire King, a noted producer and engineer who has worked with Kings of Leon, Tom Waits, and Modest Mouse among others. Jones enlisted several songwriting collaborators, including Ryan Adams and Okkervil River’s Will Sheff, as well as her frequent partner Jesse Harris. King also helped Jones put together a new group of musicians to perform on the album, including drummers Joey Waronker (Beck, R.E.M.) and James Gadson (Bill Withers), keyboardist James Poyser (Erykah Badu, Al Green), and guitarists Marc Ribot (Tom Waits, Elvis Costello) and Smokey Hormel (Johnny Cash, Joe Strummer).

Since coming on the scene in 2002, Jones’ has sold a collective 36 million albums worldwide. Her three studio albums, 2002’s eight-time Grammy Award-winning Come Away With Me, 2004’s Feels Like Home, and 2007’s Not Too Late have each topped the Billboard top 200 album charts in the U.S. and gone to No. 1 around the world. All three have been certified multi-platinum, while Come Away With Me has been certified diamond.

The track listing for The Fall is as follows:

1. Chasing Pirates (Norah Jones)

2. Even Though (Norah Jones/Jesse Harris)

3. Light As a Feather (Norah Jones/Ryan Adams)

4. Young Blood (Norah Jones/Mike Martin)

5. I Wouldn’t Need You (Norah Jones)

6. Waiting (Norah Jones)

7. It’s Gonna Be (Norah Jones)

8. You’ve Ruined Me (Norah Jones)

9. Back To Manhattan (Norah Jones)

10. Stuck (Norah Jones/Will Sheff)

11. December (Norah Jones)

12. Tell Yer Mama (Norah Jones/Jesse Harris/Richard Julian)

13. Man Of The Hour (Norah Jones)