Tuesday, January 14th, 2020

Bad Bunny – Vete

Bad Bunny: the newest way to get over the flu! (These statements have not been approved by the FDA.)


Jacob Sujin Kuppermann: Bad Bunny’s loud-as-hell shtick does not usually work for me, but “Vete” does. It’s not any seismic leap above anything on X 100PRE or “Callaita,” but its core dialectic — the iciness of the beat versus the effusive hammer of Bad Bunny’s vocals — is honed to evoke emotion. His heartbreak, his desire to push away but inability to fully commit, are fully on display, even before i knew the lyrics. It still lacks any real momentum — it’s a uniform distribution of force when it should peak somewhere — but it sounds great moving nowhere.

Brad Shoup: With these rough-breakup songs, I’d like to know why someone’s mad. And how mad? Are they being ironic? (I love ironic breakup songs; “Better Now” was the best one last decade.) Here? Who knows. He’s a grouch on the hook and tired on the verses, splitting up assets, parting with the dog (!), and pointing to the door, over and over.

Joshua Minsoo Kim: A strange marvel that Bad Bunny can open his mouth and constantly sound like he’s half-screaming, half-crying.

Alfred Soto: A petty complaint: singing this wee low key thing in the same register gets wearying for 3:12.

Will Adams: The wailing works; Bad Bunny reaches for bitterness over this breakup but can’t help spiraling out, eventually reaching a scratchy “no no no no!” Paired with the moody trap beats and undulating bass — along the lines of “Fingías” and “Pero No” — it’s a compelling display.

Michael Hong: That slight shuffle in the beat is emblematic of reggaeton, something slightly lethargic alone but frenetic when amplified in the space of the club. “Vete” uses that to its advantage, attempting to sound buoyantly exuberant but the track’s lack of features hits intensifies its pain and loneliness. Here, the hazy atmosphere and those higher-pitched synths add a dreamy dimension to what could have been in a failed relationship. Maybe if this were someone else’s song it would remain a dreamy haze, a picture of what could have been, but Bad Bunny isn’t content with that. Instead, he burns it all to the ground, getting in a number of sharp digs before singing the final lines in an almost chipper manner to demonstrate he’s over it before the song’s even finished.

Thomas Inskeep: When your track is as (relatively) stripped-down as “Vete,” it’s gonna rise or fall on the artist’s voice. Fortunately, Bad Bunny has an inordinately strong, distinctive one — and the simple production here really allows him to shine. He’s a star, and he sounds like one.

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