11th January, 1997

We're deep into that odd stretch of the Hot Latin chart where the top spot alternates between Marco Antonio Solís and Enrique Iglesias with no intermission, and if you're getting sick of it I can't blame you. But skipping irritatedly over Solís' third number one in a row over the same album would be a mistake: it's the best yet.

No doubt I've mostly come to this conclusion because I'm a sucker for Farfisa organs, and the opening riff and later solo are different enough from the usual romántico instrumentation that it caught my ear; but I also appreciate the old-fashioned bolero rhythm and construction, the tasty nylon-stringed guitar playing (sounding like current pop-bachata a decade early), and Solís' carefully-constructed, grown-up lyric. "Así Como Te Conocí" means, roughly, "The way I came to know you," and he draws a portrait that manages to be both clear-eyed and romantic about the end of a relationship. Though he falters into romántico conventionality ("sé que solo fui tu pasatiempo" / "I know I was only your pasttime"), it's mostly as assured a lyric as you might expect from the most acclaimed Latin songwriter of the 90s.

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