A string of increasingly sophisticated records framed Norah Jones among the most confident, broadly appealing artists of her generation. Still, it took a nasty breakup, a new band and Danger Mouse to create her most compelling release since Come Away With Me. Black-hearted tunes like "She's 22," "Happy Pills" and "Miriam" make Little Broken Hearts an unapologetic kiss-off boiling with hot-blooded attitude (lines like "I'm gonna smile when I take your life" might even invite a restraining order). But gauzy synthesizers and the foggy atmosphere of Danger Mouse's production are perfect counterweights, and breathy seduction songs like "Good Morning" are in her unmistakable style. So disregard the dagger in her hand, this is Jones' second record that demands our full attention.
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