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Thursday, July 18, 2024

Review: Bad Bunny returns to his roots in ‘Nadie Sabe Lo Que Va a Pasar Mañana’

The artist acknowledges the controversy and stays true to his sound

 

By LORENA ALVAREZ — arts@theaggie.org

 

Bad Bunny has recently received backlash for his relationship with Kendall Jenner and his alleged hostility towards fans. Some fans blame the singer and supermodel’s relationship for the change in the melody in his song, “Nadie Sabe” and his defensive responses towards criticism. While some feel that his new album, “Nadie Sabe Lo Que Va a Pasar Mañana” has “flopped” and wonder if the album cover featuring a horse is a nod to Jenner, the shift from predominantly featuring reggaeton in “Un Verano Sin Ti” to trap in his new album is a return to his roots.

When you google Bad Bunny, as of Nov. 16, many articles spotlight his relationship with Jenner and his negative reaction towards AI-generated NostalgIA, completely disregarding his music. Although it has become natural to want to keep up with celebrities and their love lives, their romantic relationships should not influence how viewers perceive artists’ work.

This frustration towards the constant judgment and naive belief that we as fans know our idols as people is seen in “Nadie Sabe,” a single in his new album. Here, the singer opens with an orchestra filled with prose discussing the hate and misconceptions that come with fame.

“Making money while you comment/but nobody knows/what it feels/feeling alone with a hundred thousand people in front/that all the people talk about you/without knowing a thing, without knowing you/and they even wish you the death/but not me, I wish you good luck,” read lyrics from the song translated by Genius.

Bad Bunny goes on to acknowledge the hate he received for throwing a fan’s phone.

 “You’re not my real fan, that’s why I threw your phone /the real ones, I’ll love forever,” the artist said.

Through “Nadie Sabe,” Bad Bunny notes his desire to stay true to himself, something he believes his fans will support. He even goes on to comment on the desire to confine artists to genres, noting that his music will not be bound to a single style or thing.

The singer demonstrated this with lyrics like “This album is not meant to be played and get a billion views/it’s so my real fans are happy” and “and it’s true, I’m not a trapper, nor a reggaetonero/I am the biggest star in the whole world… I have lost love, I have lost money/[for] my best defect, being very sincere/But I don’t lose faith nor the desire to kill [it].”

His blunt and vulnerable album was greeted with mixed emotions because of how different it is from “Un Verano,” an understandable reaction given that his most streamed songs on Spotify are “DÁKITI,” a collaboration with Jhayco at 1.84 billion streams and “Me Porto Bonito,” a collaboration with Chencho Corleone at 1.58 billion streams. These popular songs are reggaeton, which has led to some fans being disappointed by the shift to trap in “Nadie Sabe.” This change was met with surprise by fans who listen to his newer music, missing his first studio album, “X 100pre” which “was instrumental in bringing Latin trap to a global audience without diluting its regional spirit,” according to a review by Albums in Order.

Despite the general public having mixed feelings about the album, some fans responded positively to the reminiscent effect the album has.

Jessica X. Contreras, a fourth-year sociology major, commented on Bad Bunny taking the time to acknowledge his fans.

“I like his new album. Some songs more than others but I like how he recognizes his fans and his love for Puerto Rico,” Contreras said.

When asked about her go-to songs, Contreras noted the 2022 album, “Un Verano Sin Ti,” and Bad Bunny’s performance skills.

“I have so many [favorite songs]. It’s between ‘Moscow Mule’ and ‘Enséñame a Bailar’ both in his ‘Un Verano Sin Ti’ album. I like this album as well because it just reminds me of a good point in my life. I was able to go to his ‘Un Verano’ tour and hear it live. This album also celebrated Puerto Rico and it had overall a lot of ‘hype’ songs that were fun and cultivated happiness.”

Even though fans enjoy the music, it is still difficult for them to have access to the concert experience because of popular demand, resulting in ticket sales skyrocketing. Cristian Godinez, a fourth-year English major and professional writing minor, reminds those who could not buy tickets of other ways they could watch the show.

“I wouldn’t go to a concert of his because why would I waste that huge amount of money to see him?” Godinez said. “I could just do that in the comfort of my own home, watching his concert on YouTube or watching people I know post the whole concert on their social media.”

Mayra Torres, a student at Santa Rosa Junior College and Bad Bunny fan, also commented on the concert prices and the controversy, blaming Bad Bunny for how unaccessible his concerts have become overnight.

“I hate that they used dynamic pricing for him because Bad Bunny is a very popular artist, which made his tickets more expensive since they are always in high demand. I think the thing that many people didn’t realize [is] if it was set as normal prices tickets would have been a lot cheaper,” Torres said. “I luckily was able to find cheap tickets in the ocean of overly priced tickets and ended up paying $400 for pretty good seats… if rumors are correct and Bad Bunny’s stage is a floating stage then I will have a good view.”

Torres went on to note Bad Bunny’s return to his trap roots after side-tracking in “Un Verano.”

“I think that this was a good album, but it is definitely not my favorite out of all his albums, I would rate it a 7/10 overall. [That said], I really like the beat and the references to some of his past trap songs. For me, it was one of the closest to his old style of trap too.”

Amidst the controversy and feedback that Bad Bunny is facing, his newest album serves as a way to experiment with both trap and reggaeton elements, creating a new popular sound for this generation.

 

Written by: Lorena Alvarez — arts@theaggie.org

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