28th September, 2002

Wiki | Video

The nadir of the mid-to-late 90s on this blog, when every other single was Enrique Iglesias proving himself incapable of wrangling his strangled whine of a voice into the power-ballad patterns of classic Latin pop, returns!

It's not the song's fault. It would be easy to imagine lovely, powerful, dramatic readings from contemporaries like Marc Anthony, Alejandro Fernández, or Ricky Martin; even Luis Miguel at his most sleepwalking would outperform Iglesias here. It's a good song, and a shimmering production in both the pop and mariachi versions (a cross-genre promotion which made for perhaps the least natural fit for Iglesias' voice), with a lyric confessing to a man's deceptive, predatory behavior towards a woman, all justified because "es que te quiero tanto" (it's that I love you so much).

To a degree, the callowness, self-pity and perpetual adolescence of Iglesias' vocal performance matches the weaselly "I'm a good guy because I'm admitting how bad I am" lyric, but it's hard to believe that any of this was intentional, or that it was received by Latin pop listeners in that spirit. The quivering jaw and tremulous emotion in every line (somehow simultaneously over- and under-sung) strikes me as so patently phony that it's hard to enter sympathetically into the head of a listener who hears it as fulfilling any aesthetic, emotional, or even erotic requirement.

But plenty of selfish, immature brats engage in romantic and sexual partnerships: it must appeal to someone.

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