Tuesday, November 13th, 2012

3Ball MTY ft. América Sierra & Smoky – Besos Al Aire

From Monterey, Mexico, making their sophomore Jukebox appearance…


Jonathan Bogart: The 3Ball boys know what was compelling about “Inténtalo,” and replicate it almost embarrassingly in the boot-scooting rhythm and whining synth hooks, but América Sierra gets to sing a more emotional hook than she did last time around, sounding almost flamenco on the chorus. Smoky’s interjections don’t hurt, although we got it the first time, dude. But more than anything, I just love the screwed-down vocal that goes “viva Monterey.” Hometown pride is always awesome.

Alfred Soto: Breathlessness, flamenco guitar and Guetta synths — a real trans-Europe express. It might have been a small triumph if Smoky had expressed himself elsewhere.

Iain Mew: The beat cycling away is like someone taking small steps so fast and determinedly that they’re covering vast distances without ever expending much effort. The guests try out different modes — Smoky trying to go even harder, América Sierra staying at a cool distance — and the pleasure of the beat and synths is flexible enough to accommodate both equally easily.

Ramzi Awn: Treads lightly but carries a big stick.  The vocals on “Besos Al Aire” are suspended beautifully above the track, and the melody soars through the chorus in epic form.  Contrasted perfectly with its manic beat, the tune delivers high drama on a dance floor, done right.

Alex Ostroff: América does this lovely thing with her vocals where it constantly feels as though she is purposefully getting ahead of or pulled back from the galloping beat, even though she’s really just spouting an endless series of triplets that echo the rhythm of the synths. The rest is nice enough, but I keep going back to figure out exactly what she’s doing and why it’s so wonderful.

Anthony Easton: I love when ballads go all the way up to eleven,  speed up, and the vocals almost try to catch up… but not breathless, not showing effort. It’s a neat trick.

Katherine St Asaph: Begins as a footrace between vocalists and the beat, ends with the beat swallowing them all: a pop moment if ever there was one.

Brad Shoup: The middle section begins with the expected vocal approach, but then, transcendence: Sierra shakes off pure syncopation for a melodic swoop that plates the accusation of betrayal. Smoky does his best with the counter-charge, but his reasonable doubt can’t match her carefully-measured delivery. 3Ball’s quickened tempo is chosen wisely: it’s more fun to linger on the inflection point.

Edward Okulicz: So many of the most obvious words that would describe this come across as perjorative: strange, overly busy, disorientating. Yet “Besos Al Aire” is as much fun as it is because of those aspects, not to mention star turns by its guests. Its shape-shifting nature packs a lot of surprises into your first few listens, and the slick grooves give subsequent ones a good deal of fun as well.

Patrick St. Michel: This finds the right balance between tradition and technology, never letting one side get more attention than the other. This is cumbia through and through, but 3Ball MTY constantly splash digital touches onto the song to keep it sounding very now: the synths, the way América Sierra’s voice sounds grazed by computer effects, the robotized delivery of the group’s name. When early in the song it sounds like this is about to fist-pump into a Euro-club track, they have the good sense to pull back and not move away from their roots.

2 Responses to “3Ball MTY ft. América Sierra & Smoky – Besos Al Aire”

  1. As the Jukebox goes, so goes the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences. 3Ball MTY were indeed the Best New Artist winners tonight.

  2. Ha, we gave “Inténtalo” practically the same score. I like “Besos” a bit more, but I do think these are the best cuts on the album. Congrats to 3Ball.