REVIEW: Alejandra Guzman – Algo Natural (1999)
Between the debut album and 1994, I followed Alejandra Guzman’s career religiously and could tell you every song off every album and practically in track order; but when I became inundated with new music and artists in the mid-’90s, I could not focus on the same handful of artists I liked. My love for Alejandra has not dwindled, but it now has to share my heart with others. Because of this, when I was going through my catalog of music I told myself, I need to really sit down and give Alejandra Guzman’s work after 1994 a listen and get personal with it again.
If you know Alejandra Guzman’s catalog, then you might not need to read this article (or read it just to get familiar with her older works); but if you are just tuning into Alejandra because of her excellent Primera Fila concert tour, then stay a while and read up.
When I purchased this album in 1996 (yes, all albums minus Unico were purchased at the time of release), the only song that I really gave notice to was the title track, “Algo Natural”. The beats are super fast, hard, but not much on the rock side. It is edgy pop music and it is fun and begs to be played loud. I still love this song to date, but over the years another song has become my favorite from the album. I can actually say it is probably one of Alejandra’s best songs of all time.
Alejandra Guzman starts exploring more personal influences like funk and blues.
“Si No Te Has Ido, Vete” is an up-tempo ballad that is powerful and Alejandra’s scratchy vocals provide a nice touch to a song that seems sad and final. This style of ballad seems to start on this album, Algo Natural, and continues throughout her future career. On prior albums, Alejandra’s ballads seemed to be more like power ballads like in “Rosas Rosas” and “Hacer El Amor Con Otro” on the album, Flor De Papel; but now the ballads feel more like an extension of Alejandra’s personal style and not just a ballad to break up the album.
During the album, Alejandra gives us many styles and starts exploring more sounds like funk and blues with songs like “Vuelo A Besar”, which includes a Jamaican rap as a small riff in the song. “Bye Bye Love” and “Me Perdi En Tu Cuerpo” show us again that Alejandra Guzman is highly influenced personally by blues and more soulful music. I like how easily Alejandra can infuse that love for that style of music with the traditional Latin pop that was coming out in 1999. Alejandra knows how to stay relevant while making herself unique.
Algo Natural is a great work of art, but isn’t perfect, especially when comparing it to previous albums or even new albums. It falls into that happy medium where you have a couple of great songs while enjoying more mediocre tracks that make up the album. My biggest disappointment, song-wise, is “Haz La Guerra Y El Amor” which sounds like a rejection from Luis Miguel’s “Aries” album. It just doesn’t belong here. Plus the album ends on a downer with a song that might have found a better place somewhere in the middle.
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