Eighteen-year-old Natalia Lafourcade's debut album is an invigorating revamp of Latin pop rules, down to a cover that shuns photos in favor of the singer's own art.

Eighteen-year-old Natalia Lafourcade's debut album is an invigorating revamp of Latin pop rules, down to a cover that shuns photos in favor of the singer's own art. It's a detail that points toward a distinctive artist of a persuasiveness not heard in a new Latin act in recent memory. Lafourcade speaks to her peers in the colloquial and often insightful manner of an intelligent generation. There's a bit of Shakira in some tracks, but musically this disc is a far riskier deal, mixing acoustic guitar with scratching, bossa beats, rock'n'roll, strings, and pot banging (really). Slightly nasal, Lafourcade's voice bends with the suppleness of a guitar string, hinting at bluesy influences and raw emotions, with mistakes left on closing track "Mañana Olvidaré." If her songs were not so well-crafted, one could describe Lafourcade as "charming." "Impressive" is the better word.—LC