With a career spanning two decades, five studio albums, over 16+ million records sold world-wide, and a plethora of accolades, Nelly Furtado is a proven chart-topping luminary. Furtado is now readying her sixth studio album, The Ride, due out 31st March 2017 via her imprint, Nelstar Entertainment, through 10th St. Entertainment/Eleven Seven Music Group and Sony Music Entertainment Australia.
Recently, The Fader, exclusively premiered a track from the upcoming album, -Pipe Dreams,'(listen to it here), calling it 'a song to vibe out to, courtesy of the grooviest organ ever," while Rolling Stone called the song -Tender'; and dreamy. For The Ride, including -Pipe Dreams,' Furtado teamed up with Grammy-winning producer John Congleton (St. Vincent, Explosions in the Sky, Blondie, Erykah Badu, Franz Ferdinand, etc.). 'It was kind of cool, because I'm super pop – I really gravitate toward pop melodies when I write – but John is really interesting and might rearrange my pop song into more of a punk arrangement, nothing like what I would do," Furtado said about collaborating with Congleton to The Fader. Brooklyn Vegan praised the collaboration on -Pipe Dreams,' saying, '...you can definitely hear her and Congleton's styles clashing on it (in a good way)." As for what fans can expect on this new album, view the album trailer HERE.
Furtado's successes have been massive and fast-paced. In 2000 she released her debut album Whoa, Nelly! which earned Furtado her first Grammy for Best Female Pop Vocal Performance for -I'm Like A Bird.' Every three years that followed she would deliver a new project, including Folklore in 2003, her Pop smash Loose in 2006 (which spawned four #1 singles"-Promiscuous,; -Maneater' -Say It Right' and -All Good Things (Must Come to an End')"her international debut Mi Plan, and her return to mainstream waters with The Spirit Indestructible in 2012. In addition to the massive hits from LOOSE, songs like -Turn off the Light' ****on the Radio (Remember the Days),' -Powerless (Say What You Want),' also garnered global acclaim. Furtado's songs have shape-shifted pop music as we know it.
After 2012's The Spirit Indestructible, Furtado made a concerted effort to take a well-deserved hiatus from the spotlight. 'What happens when you have a successful album and/or career, is you go, go, go, more is more, yes yes yes and no time for no," says Furtado.
'That took its toll on me and didn't flow with my natural rhythm of who I am." Needing a clean slate, Furtado decided to dial back her life. 'I was having a crazy day and I drove to my friend's record store and I said to him, -This is going to sound crazy but can I work at your store?'" Furtado recalls. 'I started doing a lot of things I always wanted to do"like sewing, ceramic and playwriting classes. I guess I was trying to distill my life a little bit. I was living in fast forward since I was 19. Through unstrapping and layering down and simplifying my life, I found joy again in art," says Furtado about discovering the inspiration for her forthcoming album.
The Ride serves as a culmination of Furtado's journey, living life through experiences that oftentimes felt like a carnival ride you get on and sometimes have to get off. 'I let experience be the most important thing," Furtado explains. Experiences birthed several songs which found their way onto the new album. There's the pensive -Pipe Dreams' which was written on a water walk in Kenya, where Furtado learned how Kenyan women find water for their villages. A trip to Chile to visit her best friend also proved to be fortuitous, as Furtado penned -Magic' while sipping on wine in Santiago and reflecting on unrequited love. The true glue of The Ride is songwriter and producer John Congleton of the band The Paper Chase. The two met through Annie Clark of St. Vincent and had a musical chemistry from the moment Nelly entered his Dallas studio. Together they formulated the heart of the album, including the emotional -Flatline,' -Cold Hard Truth' -Paris Sun,' and the apropos -Carnival Games.' 'It's kind of like the oh fuck moment," she says of the latter track. 'You're kind of at a carnival and it looks fun, but fundamentally what is actually going on?" Working with John allowed Nelly to experiment with new sounds and arrangements, leaning on Congleton's punk beginnings.
'It's okay to maybe get off The Ride once in a while," Furtado says, 'and reflect on everything you've experienced." The result is a bold comeback project, signifying the return of an artist who lives unapologetically and is geared to bring everyone back on The Ride with her.
The Ride Tracklist
All songs Produced and Mixed by John Congleton at Elmwood Recording, Dallas, Texas/ Revolution Studios Toronto, Canada/The Orange Lounge Recording Studio Toronto, Canada. Except: Sticks and Stones, Produced by John Congleton and Mark Taylor
Cold Hard Truth
Sticks and Stones