Cordero is the type of idiosyncratic act that would have found better welcome in the eclectic '80s underground than in today's glut of musical bilingualism. Indeed, not only does this Latin-flavored indie band sing in two languages; it partakes of several influences that reflect singer-guitarist Ani Cordero's varied background. Cordero, who's shared the stage with Shannon Wright, brings a comparable intensity to bear, though her voice is more reminiscent of the light, wispy sound of Mary Timony.
After leaving Atlanta for Tucson, the Puerto Rican American worked with Giant Sand's Howe Gelb, and though that album was never released, many arrangements on her debut, Lamb Lost in the City (Daemon Records), retain a desolate, mournful southwestern air, particularly in the guitar. Half the album is sung in Spanish, wedding rumbling traditional Latin rhythms and horns to the spooky, often droning guitar lines of Cordero and Lynn Wright (of the underacknowledged Bee & Flower). Caught between the sounds of her heritage and a haunting, Velvetish lope, the album's approaches are less an integrated whole than expressions of competing impulses. Together they make for an enticing mix, the upbeat Latin numbers spicing up the dirgelike effect of the other songs like a dash of red pepper.