Nortec Collective fans everywhere will be very excited to listen to Clorofila’s solo release, Corridos Urbanos, a mostly instrumental album that scores major points for peacefully weaving Norteño music with techno and a little bit of pop. Jorge Verdin, the man behind Clorofila, has for years lent his musical and graphic design skills to the Nortec Collective, but now strikes out with his own with this pleasing record.
By the third song, “’BabyRock’ Rock,” which includes soft vocals by Fernanda Karolys, one can already tell this is an album that has the potential to excite you and relax you all at once. With a variety of accordion, clarinet, tuba, keyboards, guitar and the tarola, Clorofila speaks of “Naked Ladies” that are oh, so hot, in the coolest approach.
The overly seductive “Nicole Ya No Baila Aqui” and “Llantera” prove to be, at least to me, the cleverest embodiment of Nortec itself—the effortless blending of Norteño and techno.
Verdin spoke of focusing on nostalgia for the album, drawing inspiration from his childhood in Tijuana for several of the songs—like where he bought his first 45s in “Discoteca Nacional” to an AM station that specialized in Norteño music in “Radio 80.”
What I loved about Corridos Urbanos is that it caught me off guard. It’s beautifully unexpected—the kind of album you want to hear when you’re getting ready to go out, the kind of album you want to hear when you’re getting ready for a nap (like I did). Verdin masterfully shows that his genius not only lies in design, but in this music—this music in which there’s so much to take in, yet it all fits perfectly together and tells a story well throughout the album.
For songs such as “El General” and my personal favorite, “Babai,” which is said to be based on stories of violence related to friends and family, Verdin focused on loss as the main theme. The beauty in these songs lies in their entrancing, tranquil beat, once again proving that the words of Kurt Cobain will forever ring true for all music: “Thank you for the tragedy. I need it for my art.”