Reggaeton is back! Stronger and better sounding than ever, thanks to Nicky Jam and his rise from the ashes in Colombia. Fenix is the his new record, but will it be the fortune changer he so desperately seeks after all these years? Let’s have a good listen.
>Great voice and no auto-tune thankfully
>Nice remixes of his biggest hits El Perdon and Hasta el Amanecer
>Good choice of featuring artists like Wisin, Sean Paul, Arcangel and Daddy Yankee
>Large tracklist with some fantastic classic reggeaton songs and melodies
>Several songs sound too similar in both the typical reggaeton beat and melody
>Seriously stop saying Saga Whiteblack and Nicky Jam at the end of every single song
‘Fenix’ the latest and greatest record from Nick Rivera Camino or Nicky Jam, is an absolute showing of perseverance and a proper case of resurrection from the depths of the reggaeton world. Nicky has two very interesting facts about him that make him that I really want to shed some light upon.
Firstly he was born in New York not Puerto Rico, and did not even speak Spanish before moving down to Puerto Rico at the age of 11. After a quick rise in the then still ‘underground’ reggaeton scene, things unfortunately went pear-shaped for Nicky. After missing out on being part of the hit Daddy Yankee’s song Gasolina in 2004 that put reggaeton on the map globally, it appeared that the Puerto Rico scene was moving towards a more futuristic electro-influenced pop sound. One that Nicky did not feel at home in and had no success in. Then followed some issues with law enforcement, not paying his bills and failing to deliver new hit songs, a new low had been reached. Thus Nicky moved to Colombia where he became part of the second global rise of authentic reggaeton music and managed rise from the ashes.
Secondly Nicky ‘can’ actually sing, no auto-tune like almost every other Reggaeton artist or rapper like T-Pain nowadays.
Bringing us to the record in question, Fenix.
Not often do you come across a record that has 26 songs, albeit including some remix and English versions of other tracks, but nonetheless a large variety of songs. Not just any selection of songs though. Nicky does a fantastic job at throwing in some proper love songs and self-reflection verses combined with fantastic melodies that really make you turn this album on repeat. That is at least what I have been doing the past weeks.
Nicky knows how to show us how to do a proper American hip hop influenced song with El Ganador and turn it into a heavy latino rap song. I love the intensity, darkness and heavy bass-line. Being an admirer of many music styles I have also found myself to be enjoying reggaeton for over 13 years now and have always been a big fan of the likes of Don Omar, Daddy Yankee and Wisin y Yandel. That is why the collaboration with Wisin had peaked my interest, and rightly so. Si Tu la Ves is both a poetic love song as well as a soft reggaeton pop song with a very underlaying tune and chorus.
My favourite two songs are by far Estrella and Me Enamoras. Estrella meaning Star is one of those songs really showcasing Nicky’s vocal range. Whereas ‘Me Enamoras’ is one of the best songs I have heard in years. Slight exaggeration you might think, but no I mean it. The beat, chorus and melody has been stuck with me for weeks now and always puts a smile on my face. If one thing is clear on this album, Mr Jam likes to express his love for the senoritas 😉
Most of you will have heard his biggest hit El Perdon together with Enrique Iglesias and latest hit Hasta el Amanecer, also one of the better songs on this album. Even in English Nicky sounds authentic and nearly accent-less in tracks like Without You Tonight and I Can’t Forget You.
Here is my list of suggested favourite songs on the album:
7. Si Tu la Ves (feat. Wisin)
9. Nadie Como Tu (feat. El Alfa)
14. Tu Cuerpo Me Ama (feat. MineK)
16. Despacio (feat. Arcangel)
18. Me Enamoras
21. El Perdon (feat. Enrique Iglesias)
22. Hasta el Amanecer
If you were not a fan of the traditional reggaeton coming Don Omar or Daddy Yankee then I suggest you give reggaeton and Nicky Jam second chance, because this 1 hour 31 mins album is true blessing to anyone’s ears.