Album Review: Billie Joe & Norah - 'Foreverly'

4 December 2013 | 11:03 am | Staff Writer

The weirdest pair in folk.

So, Green Day's Billie Joe Armstrong teaming up with Norah Jones to re-create the Everly Brothers 1958 album 'Songs Our Daddy Taught Us' is kind of random right? It really is, however it is also weirdly good.

This is easily the Green Day frontman as you have never heard him before but interestingly enough his voice not only suits the country rock genre, but the pairing with Jones. The record, which is essentially covers of covers, puts Armstrong into a relaxed state, gently singing his lines in a fashion that is barely recognisaable against the punk rocker we know and love. Jones offsets his whiny tones with some lower ones, which makes for a folk pairing like never before.

The other main change from the original album is the full instrumentation given where these songs were originally performed in just a stripped back acoustic mode, which does nothing to modernise the sound, rather pays homage to the genre and gives it a more traditional boost. The record is given a live feel with most of the focus put on the vocals which drive everything, especially on opening track 'Roving Gambler' only to be broken up every now and then by a harmonica.

The relaxed feel that overruns the record continues through the ironically titled 'Lightning Express', the album's slowest track, which dalliances with some gentle guitar lines and waltz like pace. Jones takes the spotlight on 'I'm Here To Get My Baby Out of Jail 'backed by some simple guitar chords before another waltz number with haunting bass overtones in 'Kentucky'.

Moving through the record it is easy to get lost in its slow drawl. This is an album for certain occasions, like serious chill out ones, maybe even just as background music, or preferably, playing while entering a saloon after a long day rounding up cattle.

It is hard to decide what this album's target market is? Perhaps, Green Day fans with a penchant for The Everly Brothers? This will in no way become one of your favourite records but it is performed extremely well and an interesting side to Billie Joe's musical talents.

1. Roving Gambler

2. Long Time Gone

3. Lightning Express

4. Silver Haired Daddy of Mine

5. Down In The Willow Garden

6. Who's Gonna Shoe Your Pretty Little Feet

7. Oh So Many Years

8. Barbara Allen

9. Rockin' Alone (In An Old Rockin' Chair)

10. I'm Here To Get My Baby Out Of Jail

11. Kentucky

12. Put My Little Shoes Away

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