At this point, Norah Jones would do herself a world of good to just accept that less-than-complimentary title of “Snorah Jones”.
The 37-year-old singer-songwriter spent a good chunk of her musical career trying to shake off the sleepy undertone of 2002’s critically acclaimed Come Away With Me.
While not completely misguided, her foray into anonymous adult contemporary terrain – from flirtations with out-of-touch country music to Danger Mouse-esque indie pop – was completely indistinct; never quite appealing to casual pop listeners nor retain the interest of jazz fans.
After all those musical detours, Day Breaks feels like a return to form. On her sixth studio album, the New York City-based songstress explores jazz in all its luxurious somnambulant glory.
There’s more glittering piano this time around. The excellent Flipside sees Jones delivering soulful bursts of melodies over frantic tinkling of the ivories.
Then there is the charming first single Carry On, a midnight burner that endears with honeyed vocals and smooth instrumentals.
But as most jazz or jazz-nuanced records go, Day Breaks has the tendency of indulging too much in the languid. At times, the hazy vibe of the songs float over the periphery of attention.
Then again, that’s just a small prize to pay for some good ol’ jazzy music.
Blue Note Records