Nora – ‘Wonder’: An artsy kind of folk beauty

Nora sets a wonderful example for folk acts to follow.

PromoImageOne moment you’re sitting and enjoying a beautiful grassy landscape, presumably Scandinavia way, and the next you’re in a smoky jazz club kind of place, before leaving back into the natural beauty to go and roll down a grassy hill.

No, you’re not dreaming (though it does feel dreamlike). You’re listening to ‘Wonder’, Nora’s latest single that is so traditionally folk that even it tries to avoid being so overbearingly folk by adding an artsy sophistication.

It’s a very interesting song. It has a very organic, but highly unusual, progression from stomping acoustic-led folk track to sprawling jazz-esque piano-led bridge. And this makes it become very prominent.

With folk tracks, especially since their revival in popularity, it’s easy for listeners to fade out and let the track become background noise. With this jazzy little bridge, that doesn’t happen. Your intrigue snaps you right back in.
It works so well it’s a mystery why more folk artists haven’t embraced a jazz element in their own music. Then again, those artists aren’t Nora – and it just makes ‘Wonder’ all the more spectacular.

But don’t mistake ‘Wonder’ for being the typical type of folk bore but with added piano plinking. It’s got a solid rhythm section that marches this track forward, and it produces a sense of building tension: like you’re actually going somewhere. And yes, you are: after the folk swings back in after the bridge, it begins to cascade into a fantastic pop-folk climax that would kill at festivals. It sounds BIG.

We can’t praise ‘Wonder’ enough, or Nora for bringing it to life. Find it, listen and love.

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