By Kirsten Conover, Jef Scoville, and David Sterritt.
The Christian Science Monitor
One World (Putumayo): If you're looking for an introductory smorgasbord of world music, this CD is for you. Here, well-known artists join rising stars in a compilation of 15 singles from the likes of Johnny Clegg and Juluka, Gipsy Kings, Peter Gabriel with Youssou N'Dour, Bob Marley, and Capercaillie. The liner notes are full of information on the bands.
- Kirsten Conover
Ellis Paul - Carnival of Voices (Philo): For his third CD, Ellis Paul steps back from the pop crunch of his last recording to a simpler sound, focusing more on his uniquely breathy tenor, a voice capable of bringing a noisy club to an abrupt, attentive silence. Paul's matter-of-fact stories overflow his songs and spill from imagined beginnings to unspecified possibilities - while his characters resonate with a ring of truth, leading us to care about them whether they are heroes, junkies, or both. Highlights on this disc of mostly ballads include the jazzy "Self Portrait" and a gravity-defying "Weightless. …