Elvis Crespo, the king of 'bomba' style merengue, turns up the heat on his sophmore recording, PINTAME. This vaguely effeminate hunk (a standout among his peers) pens several of the romantic tunes that he sings, infusing his metaphors with a delicate brand of passion. Throbbing bass and a swirling horn section complete the seduction. The tight, focused production work of Luis Angel Cruz and Robert Cora grooves hard but keeps the spotlight on the star.
The saxophones carry the title track to a fever pitch as Elvis yearns for his ladylove to materialize at the tip of a painter's brush. "Ven" is a call for reconciliation, while "Besos De Coral" is a lovely seaside metaphor--alive with the wet kiss of waves and romps in the sand. The booming bass drops out for the poignant "Pequeno Luis," an admirable outcry against domestic violence crooned with full dramatic force to the sound of harp, timpani, and strings.