New For Ricky Martin Fans
Life: Ricky Martin's self-titled 1999 album made him an international crossover star, and it's been both a blessing and a curse ever since. The Puerto Rican heartthrob became the poster boy for the much-ballyhoed Latin-pop movement, and he paved the way for English-language albums from Paulina Rubio, Thalia and Shakira. At the same time, Martin's processed pop recordings quickly lost favor at radio, and he seemed destined to become a musical Life footnote.
Ricky Martin Life CD finds the charismatic singer exuding a newfound confidence and showcasing some much-needed musical diversity. Martin traveled to India to record the string arrangements for the album, and that influence is felt throughout the disc's 12 tracks. Middle Eastern accents embellish tracks "Til I Get To You" and "I Won't Desert You," and groovy first single "I Don't Care" adds guest vocals from Fat Joe and soulful songbird Amerie for some street cred. Vocally, Martin sounds better than ever; he pushes his modest voice past its normal limit to match the intensity of the music. And like any good pop icon looking to maximize airplay, Martin dabbles in reggaeton during "Drop it On Me" and the Luny Tunes Mix of "Que Mas Da (I Don't Care)." Life may be the sound of an artist still looking for his individual sound, but it's a pretty enjoyable ride nonetheless.
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