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A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this music.
What parents need to know
- Parents say
- Kids say
What's the story?
Nelly Furtado hits on some positive messages on FOLKLORE. The first two tracks, \"One-Trick Pony\" and \"Powerless (Say What You Want)\" warn about selling out to a predictable, mass-produced image. She also honors her cultural roots; she sings in Portuguese and the song \"Island of Wonder\" is about the Azores, where her parents are from. The most controversial song, \"Explode,\" mentions both drinking and drug use (\"Slip the acid on your tongue?/ We couldn't get enough\"), but it's far from a glamorous portrayal; the lyrics also address a friend being raped behind a McDonalds and contains the refrain \"Stuck in the teenage waste.\" But too often Furtado's words are vague, poorly written, or simply clichés (In \"Build You Up\" she sings \"Baby, they build you up/ Only to tear you down/ Don't give up).
Is it any good?
It's hard to get too excited about this album. The pop tracks lack originality and, with minor exceptions, Furtado's voice isn't big enough to bring any energy to her ballads. While she is to be commended for fusing varied elements (listeners will hear mandolin and cavaquinho, a traditional Portuguese and Brazilian guitar, mixed with modern turntable techniques, as well as more modern scratching), the results are basically banal.