Reviews

Ivy Queen

On her fourth solo album Real, reggaeton diva Ivy Queen adapts her confident, raspy vocals to a wide range of styles, including the lilting Haitian compas rhythms of "Dile" ("Tell Her"), the bhangra-flavored "Baila Asi" ("Dance Like This"), the acoustic guitar ballad "Angel Caido" ("Fallen Angel"), and "Tocame" ("Caress Me"), a spicy duet with salsa siren La India. There are plenty of hardcore, spliced-and-diced, dancehall/hip-hop beats that find Ivy laying down the rough and rugged, fast-paced raps that have made her reggaeton's queen. But it's the audacious musical explorations that make Real a surprisingly nuanced and ultimately satisfying release.
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PATRICIA MESCHINO