Show: Natacha Atlas Raised by an Arabic father and an English mother in a Moroccan neighborhood in the suburbs of Brussels, Natacha Atlas has spent her entire career exploring collisions of Western and Middle Eastern music. On her most recent album, Ana Hina, her singing is intimate, conversational, sometimes even hushed, and the restrained instrumental backdrops—compact string arrangements, tinkling piano, gently percolating Middle Eastern percussion, reeling Paris-cafe accordion, slaloming ney and clarinet—make it possible to hear a richness and variety of tone in her voice that was sometimes concealed in her earlier, dance-oriented work.
Dinner: Los Nopales The grilled tilapia tacos at this low-key storefront are so good, so bright and fresh, that at these prices—$5.95 for three tacos ($6.95 at dinner)—it seems like you’re stealing. The sweet, rich coffee flan we finished with was also a special—one of the friendly owners told us the chef, her husband, is constantly experimenting. That’s the kind of thing you’d expect at a place far more swank; to find it in a modest storefront is beguiling.
4544 N. Western Ave., 773-334-3149, losnopalesrestaurant.com