He’s been proclaimed the latinx Chris Brown, and has currently one if not THE biggest latin song topping the global charts “Todo De Ti”. Having branched out into the pop market with Selena Gomez on “Baila Conmigo” and now Luis Fonsi (“Vacio”) – not to mention Jennifer Lopez, Christina Aguilera and Alicia Keys also in the pipeline – Raúl Alejandro Ocasio Ruiz better known as Rauw Alejandro, has never boxed himself in by sticking to one genre of music. And his new 14-track album Vice Versa proves exactly why.
“Todo De Ti” sounds nothing like the Puerto Rican has put out before, with its 70s inspired rhythm and flow – and disco ball theme – the music video features a cameo from basketball legend Shaquille O’Neal. The song has become such a smash hit-hitting over 190 million views on YouTube! The perfect kick-off to Vice Versa.
Premiering the music video with the release of the album, “Sexo Virtual” instantly brings us back to Don Omar’s 2009 “Diva Virtual”, with its EDM-inflected beat, giving reggaeton an electronic twist.
“Nubes” is a pop-reggaeton song born to be a radio hit, which you can already see trending on tiktok, whilst “Cosa Guapa” reminds you of his previous hit “Quimica” Ft. Zion & Lennox, Mr. Naisgai and The Martinez Brothers. A house music sound and the bonus – he sings in english.
Produced by Puerto Rican giant Tainy, “Desenfocao” steps into the 80’s with a synth-pop beat, almost breathing in – and out – an air of The Weekend. Whereas “Aquel Nap Zzz” demonstrates Rauw is not only lyrically diverse and can sing his heart out, but he refuses to be pigeonholed into one sound, by fusing trap, dancehall and boleros.
Continuing with the experiment of different rhythms, “¿Cuando Fue?” incorporates drum ‘n’ bass but in spanish! As Rauw said it himself in a statement, definitely a “game-changing album”.
“It’s a very personal record…An album full of contrasts, reflecting the roller coaster of emotions that I have experienced throughout my life. My wish was to put all of that into an album as a way to connect deeply with my fans.”
For those who thought the album was purely pop-oriented reggaeton, “La Old Skul” brings back the perreo, sampling the early ‘00s reggaeton clasico “En La Cama” ft. Daddy Yankee and Nicky Jam as well as Sir Speedy’s “Siéntelo”.
Alejandro also opted for remaining solo throughout most of the LP, featuring only two collaborations: “Tengo Un Pal” with fellow Boricua artists Lyanno and Caleb Calloway, a trap-pop track with a bit more of aggressiveness and “Brazilera” a bend of funk music ft. the one and only Brazilian pop star Anitta.
Every song is a different mood, a hybrid of different genres and if there’s one thing clear is that Rauw Alejandro is one hell of a (versatile) artist, proving he’s not only a reggaeton and Latin trap hit-maker but can and will probably continue to dip into new sounds.
Take a listen to the full album here: