Pedro Guerra

Vidas

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AllMusic Review by

Since the first half of the '90s, Pedro Guerra made a name for himself as one of the most prominent Spanish singer/songwriters of his generation. Time has passed and a successful and respectable discography was built, but little has changed in Vidas, Guerra's first release in four years. The shy, soft-spoken singer delivers another collection of warm, poetic compositions, piano-led ballads set to amiably unobtrusive Latin rhythms, including bolero, habanera, and bossa nova, among others. Lyrically, Guerra's material always walks the line between sensitivity and sappiness, most of the time with exemplary balance. At his best, such as the first single "Quisiera Saber," he creates truly beautiful songs. At his worst, such as his ode to marital bliss "5000 Años," or the two songs dedicated to his children, his indestructible gentleness can become tiresome. This is music that will doubtlessly please fans of similar artists -- and Guerra's more than obvious influences -- such as Pablo Milanés, Silvio Rodríguez, Joaquín Sabina, or Luis Eduardo Aute, as well as of Guerra's contemporaries, and in many ways fellow travelers, such as Jorge Drexler or Kevin Johansen. On the other hand, those who do not understand Spanish, or have no patience for sensitive lull (think folk singers like James Taylor or Tracy Chapman, but with a more optimistic outlook on life), will not find much exciting about the uniformly pleasant Vidas.

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