El Madmo (“Norah Jones’ Punk Band”) @ Delancey, NYC 5/12/06
Man, Ashlee Simpson’s hot since her nose job…
But she doesn’t touch Norah Jones in a sleazy superhero disguise.
Pela were the draw to The Delancey, but after their moving set we were told to stick around for No Jo — “Norah Jones’ new punk band,” someone explained. We didn’t know what to think. But we weren’t leaving. Seeing the Queen of Lite-FM strut up to the mic a few minutes later, slinging a guitar, sporting short shorts, fishnet stockings, an eye mask, and a blonde wig, our jaws fell. No Little Willies here: Meet El Madmo! Norah was joined by Handsome Band regular Daru Oda, also in costume. The duo was definitely cute. Definitely not punk.
There were rock elements. Tunes were slinky. Others felt like ballsy country stomps. Lyrics were juvenile and cheeky. One song was a warning to scuzzy boys to not “dare look at my derrier.” Another detailed an infatuation with a boy named Carlos who was “so awesome” that Norah was gonna “knit him a sweater.” Then there was the art-rock spoken word bit, over Doors-y texture and whispered theatrics. Totally lost us. But all in all, the playing was tight, and the girl’s got pipes. Did we mention the fishnets and short shorts?
There were some decent tunes, some deft arrangements, and three absurdly talented kids having a good time on a Friday night. But overall it was just Norah taking the piss. The set ended with no reference to No Jo’s future. Gothamist left wanting more. Yeti Don’t Dance was unimpressed. Stereogum will stick with Come Away With Me which we imagine sees a sales spike every Mother’s Day. (What, you got mom Gulag Orkestar? Your mother’s fucking cool!) But we digress.