Nelly Furtado is “Loose.” Or “Promiscuous.” Either way, it’s hot.
Forget everything you thought you knew about Canadian music. Nelly Furtado is reinventing an entire nation’s musical history. You’ll find no songs about sinking ships (be they iceberg-bound cruise ships or freighters crossing Lake Superior), no denim-clad crooners, no angstyfemale performers who may or may not say “aboot” in an post-concert interview.
I honestly didn’t know what to expect when I picked up the album; A Canadian singer of Portuguese descent, creating an urban, hip-hoppy sound that she describes as “punk-hop” made me scratch my head nearly as much as the announcement that “America’s Got Talent” would be back for a second season. But then again, in a world that has given us a six-foot-five rapping cowboy and a pasty reggae musician, nothing should surprise me anymore.
What this album is not, is the Nelly Furtado you may have heard before. It’s not the cheery pop of “I’m Like A Bird” from her first album (that would be “Whoa, Nelly!” whose title should still keep her awake at night with shame) that made you want to strangle the teenagers who sang along with it in the car next to you at a red light. It’s not the mellow sound of her second album… umm… whatever it was called (oh come on… to be fair, you didn’t even KNOW she had done a second album).
This is a CD that will make even the whitest of white guys want to dance—if only because it makes the girls want get on the floor and shake it. Whether it’s the first single “Promiscuous” (coincidentally, the ringtone on Paris Hilton’s cell phone) or the catchy “Say It Right” or the Hall and Oates-inspired (bet you never thought you’d see THAT phrase in print) “Maneater,” it’s got serious groove. As an added bonus, a couple of the songs feature lyrics in Spanish, so you can look and sound like an idiot as you try to decipher and repeat the words to the song.
Song you should pay a dollar to download on iTunes, rather than just stealing it for free: “Maneater” should be a universal favorite. It works in the club, it has a vaguely marching-band-ish sound for the band geeks, and she tells you to “move your body around like a nympho.” I mean, who can say no to that? Except the band geeks, of course. Nobody wants to see that.
Rating: On a scale of 1 to 5, I’d give this album 4 Molsons.
It’s fun and upbeat. I may not have found the “punk” in “punk-hop,” but I did have to turn the bass down in my car so I didn’t appear to be the only 30-year-old in the history of mankind who was bumpin’ to Nelly Furtado. So I guess that’s something.