24

SUNDAY

Ever had one of those musical fantasies in which, say, Prince shows up at your pad and peruses through your CDs looking for something copacetic? Call it daydreaming, but I fancy that Prince would dig Esthero’s second album, Wikked Lil’ Grrrls. There is a roving ambition to it not found on Esthero’s precocious debut, Breath From Another, that brings to mind the Purple Wonder’s forays into divergent musical styles. Though the album is definitely uneven—for example, the Beatlesque “Everyday Is a Holiday (With You)” seems like it’s there simply to prove that Esthero can do a sunny song—there are plenty of tunes that ably fill the triphop, R&B, funk, and jazz slots. If Esthero seems to be working overtime to show off the spectrum of her considerable talent, well, as the opener, “We R in Need of a Musical ReVoLuTion” makes plain, the lady is intent on fomenting a critique of urban music from within said genre. MN8 presents Esthero and Tortured Soul at 8:30 p.m. at the 9:30 Club, 815 V St. NW. $15. (202) 397-7328.

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