11 Songs, 45 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

When artists mix pop and hip-hop the results are often a watered-down amalgam, but Ana Tijoux combines the genres with great panache on La Bala. Tijoux, who sings and raps in Spanish—she has roots in Chile and France—has created an album with pleasing variation and flow. On the dramatic title track, Tijoux’s equally effective rapping and singing is backed by reggaeton decked out with chugging strings and gunfire sound effects. The melancholy “Sacar La Voz” moves between Tijoux's emcee work and gentle vocals from Tijoux and Uruguayan singer/songwriter Jorge Drexler. “Si Te Preguntan” features the hard-hitting Cuban hip-hop group Los Aldeanos on a track driven by an insistent horn-like riff. Tinkling bells, synth runs, and heavy bass mark “Mi Mitad,” which has a guest appearance by Javier Barria, while “Las Horas” (with Solo Di Medina) is delightful 21st-century R&B with rumbling drums and fluttering strings. Tijoux saves one of the best songs for last: “Volver” has swoony background vocals and lovely strings, excellent accompaniment for deliciously dreamy lead singing.

EDITORS’ NOTES

When artists mix pop and hip-hop the results are often a watered-down amalgam, but Ana Tijoux combines the genres with great panache on La Bala. Tijoux, who sings and raps in Spanish—she has roots in Chile and France—has created an album with pleasing variation and flow. On the dramatic title track, Tijoux’s equally effective rapping and singing is backed by reggaeton decked out with chugging strings and gunfire sound effects. The melancholy “Sacar La Voz” moves between Tijoux's emcee work and gentle vocals from Tijoux and Uruguayan singer/songwriter Jorge Drexler. “Si Te Preguntan” features the hard-hitting Cuban hip-hop group Los Aldeanos on a track driven by an insistent horn-like riff. Tinkling bells, synth runs, and heavy bass mark “Mi Mitad,” which has a guest appearance by Javier Barria, while “Las Horas” (with Solo Di Medina) is delightful 21st-century R&B with rumbling drums and fluttering strings. Tijoux saves one of the best songs for last: “Volver” has swoony background vocals and lovely strings, excellent accompaniment for deliciously dreamy lead singing.

TITLE TIME

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