Monday, March 19, 2007

Cautivo de tu cuerpo soy

I hope you all are ready for what is probably my most ridiculously long post ever: my track-by-track review of Nash's debut album, Capaz de todo, which you can buy a digital version of here. Hopefully the length of this post will have exorcised some of my need or desire to write about them--I'm going to try to decrease my number of posts about what most people probably think is a rubbish boy band (I already managed to contain my excitement when I found out a few weeks ago that Måns's song was one of their favorite potential rivals, difficult as that was), but I'm convinced they've got some great songs.

Part of me is very cynical about them--"they're completely milking all these young girls for all they're worth," "they totally know what they're doing," "maybe they're a combination of arrogant and not good (just because they have this endearing rough-around-the-edges quality doesn't rule out the possiblity of arrogance)"--but part of me still envisions them as this lovely combination of that aformentioned rough-around-the-edges quality, performance wise, and good songs. That can't last forever--and, in fact, if I want them to do well at Eurovision, hopefully it won't, and I'm trying to be more leery about liking boy bands these days--they come and go so quickly--but they've drawn me in; even if I shouldn't like the group itself, I can't help liking the songs they've got.

Enough of that, though--onto the album itself.

1.) Capaz de todo--their debut single (albums opening with their lead single is generally a pet peeve of mine), and it's actually quite good. At first, I was surprised this, a mid-tempo track and not one of the album's best songs, was chosen as the first single, but it sort of makes sense--it's dramatic, with its horns and strings as well as that pounding beat. It's got an ending unlike what I'd expect from a boy band song--it's a bit edgy, even. If you just looked at the title, "Capaz de todo" ("Capable of everything"), which is taken from the line "Por ti sería capaz de todo" ("For you I would be capable of everything"), the dramatic, sort-of-edgy style of music might not seem to match the subject, but listening to all the lyrics reveals it does--though the boy might be "capable of everything" for the sake of whoever he's singing to, the song is a little more sinister than that might imply, dabbling in obsession and a complete surrender of will, adoring the object of the song's vanity and loving them more because of it, accepting slavery. I'm not even into lyrics usually, but I find the lyrics to this song very interesting, possibly mainly because they circumvent my expectations for what a boy band song about being "capable of everything" because of love would be about.

2.) Un, dos, cuatro--musically, one of the weaker songs on the album. It's mid-tempo and midway to being catchy, but doesn't quite get there. I think they're trying to pretend it's about not having the patience to deal with a girlfriend (girl is specified in this song) anymore and maybe wanting a more serious relationship, but I'm pretty sure it's actually about not being able to "wait"--you're tired of saying over and over again that you love her and hearing that she's not ready for "something more"? Real subtle, boys.

3.) Sobrenatural--and three songs in we hit the first ballad, about their love being "supernatural." It's not bad for a boy band ballad, but it's not the strongest ballad on the album and it's certainly not going to go down as a classic. Do all boy band songs have this much innuendo (if you can even call it "innuendo")? I think I may need to go back and listen to Backstreet Boys and 'N Sync again.

4.) Lo haré por ti--finally, we get to something that's purely sweet and adorable, both musically and lyrically, as well as one of the four best songs on the album. The song is mid- to up-tempo and just brimming with happiness--it's got a very bright feel about it, a sure-to-make-you-smile melody (especially in the chorus), and even breaks out into "doo-dooo-doo-dooo"'s by the end! You could criticize the lyrics for being cheesy, but they work perfectly for a song like this (and really, they are sooo cute--he lies awake at night each night waiting for the suject to return because he just can't believe they would want to be with him! And it just gets better). This is just as adorable and catchy as I hoped Luca Dirisio's "La Ricetta del campione" was going to be based on the first 18 seconds of it, before it went off in a completely new direction--even more so, in fact.

5.) Perversa--I posted this a few days ago and wrote about it then--the beat still feels stolen from a certain someone (and apparently the song itself was originally going to go to a female singer). I'm not sure how well it will hold up over time, but it was one of the most instant songs on the album for me, throwing the Nash boys into this heavy, club-esque (not dancey club) beat and giving them some lyrics clearly meant to drive the girls crazy. Still, it's surprisingly effective. If this was a single (and it shouldn't be), I can picture it having a Phixx-esque video (though Nash should definitely not try to pull off that look).

6.) Dónde estás--the second single, and the album's second ballad. When I heard this as a single, I didn't like it--it seemed to overdone and cliche for me (heck, the most repeated lines are "I feel alone, where are you?", though to be fair they sound slightly better in Spanish)--but in the context of the album, which only has three ballads, it works. It's still exactly what you'd expect from a boy band ballad (kind of a power ballad) pushed to the edge of acceptability, but I think it manages to be all right, possibly even good, even if it's dangerously close to going over that edge.

7.) Se cancela--the pace picks back up for this song, and there's been quite the attitude change from "Capaz de todo"--in fact, based on some of the parallel lyrics, it's almost an answer-back song, answering back to one of Nash's own songs, or at least as if they've suddenly snapped out of that first song. It doesn't sound like 'N Sync's "Bye Bye Bye," but think of the lyrics and the attitude of that song and you'll know what this song is about. It opens with the slightest hint of co-opted Middle Eastern influence. The lyrics are pretty rapid-pace, forcing the boys to rely on hitting each distinct syllable hard during the chorus to try to make the song catchy; it might take a few listens for the "catchiness" to hit you, and it still isn't as catchy as some of the other songs on the album, but it is very good.

8.) Déjate ir--set after a breakup, this song is more R&B-influenced that most of the other songs. It's mid-tempo, too, but calmer than the frenzy that was "Se cancela," with a little bit of an up-and-down feel in the chorus. "Se cancela" and "Déjate ir" are both good to great songs ("Se cancela" is the better of the two) , but for me, they might not be the greatest songs to have back-to-back, as neither have a super-strong hook.

9.) Sexy--naming songs "Sexy" is generally the best way to guarantee they won't be--but this one is, from the lyrics (how they say "cautivo de tu cuerpo"--and even just the sound of that phrase itself--is worthy of special mention) to the little laughs to the "uhh-ahh"'s and moans. It'd be very easy to laugh at this song (I mean, they are literally using moans in it and muttering "sexy" in the background), but the pre-chorus and chorus are great. Even if you do laugh, it's still one of the four best songs on the album.

10.) Siempre serás--back to ballads for the third and final one on the first edition of the album (the second edition adds "Más allá de las estrellas" as the final track). It's more on the sweet and soothing side than on the power ballad side as "Dónde estás" is, though it does have a chorus that tries to soar. I can't say it's one of my favorite songs on the album, but neither is it a bad song, and its tone sort of comes as a breath of fresh air at this point in the album. The "nah-nah-nah"'s are nice, if probably stolen from elsewhere (maybe even from an earlier ballad on the album).

11.) Escúchame--back to uptempo and another "I'm breaking up with you" song, but I like this chorus a lot more than that of "Se cancela"--it's easier to grab hold of (and theoretically sing). A very good song.

12.) Come To My Party--don't let that title fool you; save for one or two lines, this song is in Spanish (and who came up with those English lines? "Come to my party zone"--are you serious?). Still, it's catchy, mid- to up-tempo as well. Quality-wise, it might not be better than "Se cancela" or "Déjate ir," but it's more approachable. It's got sort-of-electro backing music.

Qué sabes del amor--on the second edition of the album, this song is track four--and a great addition it was, because it's easily one of the album's best songs. It's one of the most complete and full-sounding songs on the album, but it never overwhelms you with sound; I have a feeling it will weather time well. It starts out typically enough, mid- to up-tempo boy band song with a bit of attitude, but I love that pre-chorus and chorus, with its randomly drawn out words--it gets stuck in my head instantly and I find myself singing "Yoquiero la loooooooona y elsol" at moments when I should definitely be thinking about other things. Catchy and with a definite beat, thoroughly boy band with attitude, it's still melodic; they've packed the song with hooks, too. In fact, I think it may be my favorite song on the album, and it would stand well on its own, but having heard the whole album, I love it all the more.

I so wanted to post "Sexy," as everyone should hear it, but given that I already posted "Perversa"--with which it really makes a matched set--and I don't want people to write off the whole album as sounding like that, I decided to go for "Qué sabes del amor"--listen to it through the chorus and I promise you'll be hooked. But really, go buy "Sexy." And "Lo haré por ti"--every time it comes on, it makes my day.

Qué sabes del amor

To buy the second edition of Nash's album Capaz de todo, go here (physical); for the first edition, go here (digital). They've got another edition coming out soon, as I reported yesterday--technically a new album, but it's got most of these songs on it, as well as the Mision Eurovision songs. I really think people should buy the album, but maybe the smart thing to do would be to wait for April and get this new album when it comes out. It'll probably be a lot cheaper to go with the digital edition of the first album, though, since that cuts out shipping costs. Three editions of one album, though? They're turning into the Grégory Lemarchals of Spain.

Next up: something really special to make up for putting up with this, I promise; it has nothing to do with Nash, Spain, or boy bands and hopefully no one has heard it, unless you're from Denmark or into dance music.


Adrian said...

Interesting review. I'm still not sure what I think of Nash. They look great, but the jury is out on the singing. We'll see...

Kevin said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Kevin said...

PS, Os dare un billón de pesetas si vos parais de hablar de NASH.


Was FNAC too expensive as well?

And in regards to BWO, I'm an idiot for forgetting to mention that "Save My Pride" is a cover of sorts! And in addition to SoundFactory, fellow paisans The Attic and Credheadz have also provided mixes. Duh!

Poster Girl said...

Yeah, "rough around the edges" is a nice way of saying "they sure better get their act together and work on their singing every space minute if they want to have any chance."

You don't have to pay me, but I am going to stop writing about them (until Eurovision, at least) ;) It's done, it's said--out of my system now, I hope! I don't know what gets into me sometimes...short of them breaking up and Spain having to choose someone new to send to Eurovision, you can hold me to that :)

I don't know Credheadz, but news about the SoundFactory and the Attic remixes is great!

Poster Girl said...

P.S. It turns out the shipping was more expensive than it looked on FNAC--maybe the listed price was for within Spain? When I was checking out, I think it was going to be something like more than $50. However, I did order the Bad Boys Inc album--it's just taking 3 weeks to ship, for some reason!

rafiki.the.druid said...
This comment has been removed by the author.