Little Broken Hearts by Norah Jones (EMI). Discreet and hyperactive, Norah Jones is one of those artists that we hear very regularly about without her media presence becoming cumbersome. Between The Lost Notebooks of Hank Williamsa sublime project led by Bob Dylan in which she took part last year, the release a few months ago of the second album by her cover band The Little Willies, her collaboration with Rome, a very beautiful tribute album to the music of Italian films signed Danger Mouse and Daniele Luppi, we can’t say that it has disappeared, but its name is confined to the music sections of magazines. And it’s good. As a result, the release of his fifth album is awaited with healthy curiosity. Especially since the jazzgirl of the early 2000s co-signed it with Brian Burton, alias Danger Mouse, a very fashionable pop producer. The result is a classy pop record, where the velvet of Jones’ voice serves up sad melodies and crying lyrics. But the whole thing makes you want to smile, because you’re always happy to see a successful singer not succumbing to the lure of the tabloid press. Norah Jones is not dating Justin Bieber, is not the face of Christian Audigier or the face of the latest Chloé perfume. Yet it exists. Like Adele, who, in the media, follows in her footsteps. Hats off.
WATCH the clip Happy Pills by Norah Jones :
Time’s All Gone by Nick Waterhouse (Innovative Leisure). One again ? Eh yes. Another young musician (25 years old) whom the musical production of the last fifty years has not succeeded in convincing that there is more interesting, more modern, more attractive to play than an R’n’B of the fifties which smells good Detroit, Memphis and New Orleans. Listening to Nick Waterhouse’s first album, it’s hard not to agree with him: the warm brass, the swaying swing of a drum part, the grooving bass… His album sounds really old school, without the 21st century twist of an Amy Winehouse, invoke Screamin’ Jay Hawkins or Fats Domino, and it’s good. A very successful and rather exciting exercise in style.
Sweet Heart Sweet Light from Spiritualized (Double Six/Domino). Seventh album for the group of Jason Pierce, former leader of Spacemen 3, and unknown jewel of the royal family of English rock. A survivor’s album, literally: hospitalized for very bad pneumonia, then for an out-of-control nosebleed, Pierce has seen death very closely in recent years, but his record smells of life. While glimpsing the end can push some people to rush, awareness of the fragility of existence (especially when years of abuse of all kinds have rotted your health) does not push this musician to pick up the pace. . On the contrary : Sweet Heart Sweet Light has seen its release postponed many times due to acute perfectionism. And it was worth it: the disc is a beautiful album of fragile and powerful pop, strong in the counting (Freedom) and intense in the shoegaze (Headin’ for the Top Now). But above all, in its form, content and sound, this album is free. One only has to look at the length of the tracks (five out of eleven are over six minutes long) to be glad that the radio format hasn’t quite wiped out creativity around the world. That’s a good news !
WATCH the clip Hey Jane by Spiritualized :
A+E by Graham Coxon (EMI). He was (is?) Blur’s guitarist. What to do with it? Such a legendary past? While his sidekick Damon Albarn gesticulates, fidgets, produces, Coxon also creates, but in his own melancholic corner. And he’s trying new things. Like making a record “that makes a racket”, with “a slightly cheap sound that hurts your head”. Successful bet, A+E is strange, noisy, far from the pop to which he had hitherto accustomed us in solo. Everyone is free to choose their favorite Graham, but hard in any case not to admire this dynamism which makes him experiment tirelessly, without ever resting on faded laurels. Who loves him follows him.
WATCH the clip Ooh Yeh Yeh and Graham Coxon:
Fortify Your Innocence by Yerevan Tusk (Underdog Records). There is something marvelous in pop that allows a Parisian named Pacôme to become a guitarist and singer in a group without borders. Erevan Tusk is a Parisian formation, but its music does not come from nowhere, or from everywhere. Beautiful songs, two singers who give them the necessary relief, arrangements by layers which evoke at times the Smiths, but played at the wrong speed on a vinyl turntable (Frostbitten)… It’s sad, sometimes very beautiful (One of These Days sounds like a classic), dreamy and elegant and it looks towards the best, REM in the lead, Neil Young second for the folk side under amphetate. All this made in France and sung in the language of Shakespeare. Nice.