"I'm not a one-trick pony," sings Nelly Furtado on the opening track of her new album, and it quickly becomes apparent that that one powerful sentiment is a declaration that Folklore is more than just a well-timed follow-up to her widely lauded debut, Whoa, Nelly! Besides the fact that she's now legally allowed to drink alcohol, Furtado has matured into an artist who's able to display her true colors in a variety of contexts—from hip hop to stirring string arrangements to pure pop. Folklore's earthy grooves, innovative melodies and wide-open lyrics conspire to make it a sure bet.
Release date: out now
Saturday, Dec. 20; Outpost Performance Space (all ages, 8 p.m.): Legendary folksinger, songwriter and storyteller Rosalie Sorrels will make her first appearance in Albuquerque in over two years with a concert that ironically celebrates her life on the road and her retirement from it, simultaneously. Mother of 22 solo recordings during a career that has spanned 40 years, Sorrels is promoting her latest release, Rosalie Sorrels and Friends, which features guest performances by Peggy Seeger, David Bromberg and Loudon Wainwright III.
On Thursday, Dec. 18, Stella Blue will host an "End-of-Semester Reggae Party," featuring selections chosen and spun by DJs Hovey D and Kabir from 9 p.m. to 1 a.m. Cover is only $2. Those of the female persuasion get through the doors free of charge. Then, on every Thursday night thereafter, Stella Blue will present Stella Blue's Reggae Bash for those of you who can't get enough of ganja-soaked grooves. ... Albuquerque's most famous (and deservingly so, if I do say so my damn self) band, the Shins, have landed on yet another national magazine cover. The Dec. 15 edition of Pollstar magazine, the leading journal of touring bands in the country and the one nearly every club in America you'll ever visit books bands from, is graced with the faces of Jesse, Marty, James and Dave. Inside, there's an accompanying article titled "Making Money with the Shins." I certainly hope they are. Making money, that is. ... Local guitarist/music professor Michael Chapdelaine has finally released a Christmas album featuring renditions of—you guessed it!—Christmas carols and holiday music. Details are few since I can't seem to access his website, but the album sounds lush and wondrous, just like the holidays used to be before my parents got divorced and my brother moved away. You can get your copy at Natural Sound and other area record stores friendly to local releases. City on a Hill, the organization that currently bases itself in the historic (and recently remodeled) Lobo Theater will present the third in their three-concert series on Saturday, Dec. 20 at 8 p.m. with gospel singer Hillary Smith. The concert is free and open to all ages.
East Mountain residents have new flavors and an entirely new dining experience waiting for them at Nouveau Noodles, the latest restaurant to open in the area in the past few months. Located on North Highway 14 in the building that formerly housed Kokopelli's restaurant, Nouveau Noodles promises something different for area diners, in the form of carefully crafted Asian-fusion cuisine.
On their 17th album of 90-BPM darkly hued songs, The Church manage to sound exactly as they have for the past 23 years. Forget Yourself was reportedly recorded spontaneously by drummer Tim Powles, which purportedly means that the band recorded live as a four-piece unit instead of in layer upon layer of overdubs. The result is a record that sounds a tad underproduced as Church albums go, but, being that that's all that separates it from about 15 other Church records, I'll take it. The songs here aren't particularly strong, but some of the understated guitar work is quite interesting.
Release date: Jan. 20, 2004
Sosa is perhaps the most prominent Cuban jazz pianist working today. On his 10th album, he's teamed up with Los Angeles-based world music percussionist Adam Rudolph with mixed results. Sosa is known for playing outside the box of Afro-Cuban jazz and as a pianist with fully evolved harmonic sense. So while some of Rudolph's percussion lends itself nicely to Sosa's expressive compositions, some of it simply sounds like a three-year-old in a kitchen full of pots and pans, which distracts from Sosa's mostly tender, engaging keyboard work. At times, Rudolph seems to bang on things simply because he has them.
Release date: Jan. 13, 2004