Wednesday, October 31st, 2018

Bad Bunny ft. Drake – Mia

CORRECTION: A previous subhead implied that we have covered “triple digits’ worth of Drake singles.” We have actually covered 60 here, and this is #61. We regret the error, among other things.


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Crystal Leww: Bad Bunny’s been referred to as the Drake of the Latin America urban scene, and while it’s a little unfair to center American pop culture, the comparison makes a lot of sense. It was only a matter of time before the two collaborated. Luckily, “Mia” is a proper banger, a song that women can party to rather than the dude club music that seemed to be such a huge part of Scorpion. This is the best version of both of these guys! Bonus points for a line like “yo soy tu Romeo pero no soy un santo” — that boy Bad Bunny is trouble. 
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Jacob Sujin Kuppermann: When Drake does a feature, it’s typically more of a corporate merger, a stripping of an artist’s original style for parts that leaves Drake revitalized and the other party slightly empty. On “Mia,” Drake takes a more restrained approach– maybe the Spanish requirement threw him, or maybe Bad Bunny is simply big enough to fight him off– and it benefits everyone. On pre-chorus/hook duty, he plays the loverman part well enough to make Bad Bunny’s slightly more hard-edged approach feel more solid, and then he mostly gets the hell out of the way. It’s a Drake feature that feels like a feature for once.
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Julian Axelrod: Having Drake on your song is a deal with the [6] devil: He’ll probably give you your biggest hit, but he always sucks up all the air in the room. So it’s refreshing to hear Drake take a backseat to Bad Bunny, who is big enough that he doesn’t need to kowtow for a cosign. The result is a sleek, vibrant soon-to-be-hit that never stops moving and never succumbs to cliché. Bunny nearly outshines Aubrey with his inimitable rasp, even if some of his guest’s romantic possessiveness rubs off.
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John Seroff: Two of my least favorite exemplars of the bad-little-boy school of toxic masculinity team up and… it’s not that bad? Not not generic, but my expectations were already so low that it feels like a win.
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Joshua Minsoo Kim: The very best thing about “Mia” is that it exists. The second best thing about “Mia” is that it’s successful. Yes, Drake may just be gunning for more #1s, but it’s impossible to deny that he pairs nicely with Bad Bunny. So if it makes some sort of sense, I’d say it’s worth trying out. I dream of a day when pop stars are more eager to sing in languages that aren’t their own. Every language has its own individualized means of expression, and singers have a lot to gain from breaking down these barriers. After all, it’s music that’s the greatest lingua franca.
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Alfred Soto: Their voices blurring into a horny drone mitigated by the trop house beat, Bad Bunny and Drake don’t top each other with obnoxiousness. The production’s insistent contemporaneity helps: it’s the equivalent of a Ashanti track in 2005 or anonymous Italo disco in early 1985.
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Taylor Alatorre: Other than the ingratiating chirp-voice motif and admittedly clever pun on Romeo Santos (who gave us Drizzy en Español first), there’s nothing in here that makes me think anything other than “yep, this is the Bad Bunny single featuring Drake.” And in that most mercenary of ways, it delivers. A valid answer to the future question “what did 2018 sound like?”.
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