Aleks Syntek

Métodos de Placer Instantáneo

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One-man orchestra Aleks Syntek returned with Métodos de Placer Instantáneo, a record that serves both as a good example of his craft and as a precise indicator of what was considered "commercial/mainstream" in the 2009 Latin pop market. In other words, the album is mostly dominated by a ubiquitous obsession with 1980s synth/dance music, faultlessly executed. Syntek has a deserved reputation as a popmeister studio wizard, but that is also his downfall: as eminently likable as his music is, most of it is also definitely lightweight. Métodos de Placer Instantáneo has a terrific lead single in "Loca," also used as the main theme from the popular TV show Los Exitosos Pérez; a curious duet with Rubén Blades on the Caribbean-meets-funk "Mujer Animal" (curious since Blades raps!); and the a cappella opener, "Ese Mal Gusto," with Syntek doing all the instruments with his voice. It is in numbers such as these that Syntek is at his best, when he is patently having fun with the music and coming up with (gently) ironic lyrics. When he applies himself to standard pop songs about love, as in the rest of the album, he comes up with exactly that: fairly standard fare, very well done, with all the proper hooks, catchy choruses, and banal lyrics -- but ultimately precious little to write home about. A 2009 Latin Grammy nominee, Métodos de Placer Instantáneo features about ten new songs, plus several remixes and/or bonus tracks, depending on the edition you get. A CD/DVD edition with Syntek explaining his creative process in the studio is also available.

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