Paulina Rubio

Brava!

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A veteran of the Latino-pop scene before Lady Gaga was even born, Mexican singer/actress Paulina Rubio now appears to have borrowed some inspiration from her younger upstart by recruiting ubiquitous producer RedOne for her tenth studio album, Brava! Unsurprisingly, his three contributions, the shimmering trance-pop of lead single "Me Gustas Tanto," the rubbery electro of "All Around the World," and the hypnotic dancefloor anthem "Heat of the Night" (the latter two making this her first bilingual effort since 2002's Border Girl) offer little deviation from his usual Auto-Tuned synth-heavy formula. But elsewhere, the eventful two-year break since Gran City Pop appears to have instilled a more adventurous spirit, as evident on the breezy ska-pop of "Cásate con Tu Mamá," an intriguing tale of a man with Oedipus Complex syndrome, the slow-burning ranchera-rock of closer "Volvamos a Empezar," and the Gypsy jazz-tinged Europop of "Olvídate de Mi," while there's genuinely compelling raw emotion on the minor-key ABBA-esque melodies of "Sabes Que Te Amo" and the unsurprisingly melancholic balladry of "Que Estuvieras Aqui," a tearjerking tribute to her father, who passed away during the album's recording. RedOne's generic offerings and the Guetta-inspired floor-filler "Hoy Me Toca a Mi" (featuring a phoned-in guest vocal from Black Eyed Peas' Taboo) may provide the hits, but Brava! is a much more interesting proposition when Rubio furrows her own path.

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