Norah Jones, ''Come Away With Me''
Sony Music // SACD // $19.99 // June 17, 2003
Review by Aaron Beierle | posted July 4, 2003
M U S I C
A U D I O
E X T R A S
R E P L A Y
A D V I C E
Highly Recommended
E - M A I L
this review to a friend
R E V I E W S
Graphical Version

1. Don't Know Why
2. Seven Years
3. Cold Cold Heart
4. Feelin' the Same Way
5. Come Away With Me
6. Shoot the Moon
7. Turn Me On
8. Lonestar
9. I've Got to See You Again
10. Painter Song
11. One Flight Down
12. Nightingale
13. The Long Day Is Over
14. The Nearness of You

* A CD layer is also included - this SACD can be played in both CD (at least most CD players should read it) and SACD Players.


The DVD

SOUND: "Come Away With Me" is a hybrid SACD, presenting the album in DSD 5.1 and stereo, while also boasting a CD stereo track. The 5.1 mix was done by Jay Newland (the album's producer) at Sony Studios, NYC. The 5.1 mix will likely be very pleasing to the singer's fans, who will appreciate this as a tasteful, appropriate mix that highlights all aspects of the singer's music.

Essentially, the 5.1 mix is set-up - at least for the most part - as if the listener is in a small club venue listening to Norah and band on-stage. Mostly, this means that the mix is largely front-heavy, with Jones's vocals floating from the main two speakers, while the center channel provides reinforcement of the instrumentals. Surrounds provide some discrete instrumentals at times in "Feelin' the Same Way" and other tunes, but there are certainly songs throughout the presentation that didn't seem to use them at all, or very subtly - and that was certainly okay, as it felt right for the quiet, somewhat sparse nature of the songs. Still, some may find the more straightforward stereo presentation more enjoyable.

Audio quality throughout the presentation was superb and certainly stronger than the CD presentation, also present on this edition. Instrumentals sounded cleaner and crisper on the SACD presentations, lacking the very slightly harsh highs that the CD seemed to have. Jones's vocals also sounded more pleasant on the SACD edition, with a warmth, richness and clarity that the CD edition didn't reach. The singer's emotional, expressive vocals were certainly heard on the CD, but the SACD's clarity just portrayed them in a more realistic, pleasing manner that sounds very "in room".

Those who have not heard the singer's music (or have only heard about her via the several Grammy wins she had last year) should certainly head out and check out this album. Jones is a remarkable and mature talent at the young age of 22; her vocals are often laid-back and hauntingly beautiful, but she clearly shows range at other points throughout the album. The music is a delightfully textured, moody and romantic jazz that has Jones backed up by a talented group of musicians. Her well-written, thoughtful lyrics and smooth, sweet voice are certainly easy to get caught up in, as well.

Final Thoughts: Terrific album, superb SACD. Jones is a marvelous talent that will hopefully continue to improve even further as she gets older. This reasonably priced SACD edition provides a very enjoyable surround and stereo SACD mix, as well as a hybrid CD layer. Those who are already fans should appreciate the higher quality of the SACD presentation, while those who haven't sampled the singer's music yet should absolutely seek this new edition of the popular/award-winning album out as soon as possible.


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