03/03/1997 at 01:00 AM EST
If the world's top scientists got bored in the lab one day and decided to blend the genes of Madonna
and Enya just for kicks, the result would probably be Boden. On her debut CD, this Irish singer displays the floating, lullaby-ready voice of the latter and the thumping disco instincts of the former. For the most part, this makes for an engagingly eclectic mix of musical styles. When lilting fiddles meet drum machines, accompanied by a brief rap from someone known only as JC 001, on "Oh How I Cry," the unlikely blend takes the listener to new and appealing territory.
Some of Boden's material can drift too far into dreary techno-pop or New Age vapidity, but anybody who can turn a tin whistle into a funky instrument ("Paddy's Call") is worth listening to. (A&M)