Maluma’s “Papi Juancho” Falls Short of Expectations

Maluma released his fifth studio album, "Papi Juancho" on Aug .21.

Felipe Cisternas / Staff Writer

Papi Juancho, the Colombian singer/songwriter’s newest album is overtly sexual and loaded with immature, chauvinistic quips–a major departure from the rich, romantic storytelling found on his previous releases.

“Luz Verde,” perhaps the album’s most graphic track, is an auto-tuned rap-style recounting of a one-sided sexual encounter with an unnamed female partner. He reveals his alter ego at the conclusion of this track “AKA Papi Juancho.”

Pidió castigo, dice que soy su amigo,” raps Maluma, “she asks to be punished, she says I’m her friend.”

On Maluma’s 2019 album 11:11, the song “Me Enamore de ti”, recounts the timeless story of falling madly in love.

Prometo darte todo y que nada te falteMe enamore de ti, de tu figura de tu cara y ya no se que hacer,” he sings. “I promise to give you everything and that there is nothing to complain about… I fell in love with you, with your figure, with your face and I don’t know what to do anymore.” 

This seems more appreciative of this woman and the experience of being left awestruck by her beautyWhen compared to Papi Juancho, these lyrics seem more romantic and have less sexual content.

Maluma’s staple hits like “ Felices Los 4” and “11 PM” have dominated the airwaves, and are still in regular rotation on Miami reggaeton stations like Mix 98.3 and Ritmo 95.7, also appear less risqué as well.

In the new album’s opening track, “Medallo City”  Maluma sings over a salsa beat about Colombia’s music increasingly reaching a global audience. 

This mixture of traditional Colombian Salsa with the more contemporary sounds of reggaeton distinguishes “Medallo City” from the other tracks on the album.

This foray into salsa could escalate the singer to another level musically and professionally, incorporating an entirely new style into his repertoire.

The track “Madrid” features Puerto Rican trap producer and rapper Myke Towers.

Te comes a otro y yo pensándote cuando podría ‘tar bellaqueandote,” raps Maluma, “you’re making love to someone else, and I’m here thinking of you when I could be fooling around with you.”  

Recycled “dembow” beats, common in reggaeton, on the Madrid track as well as several others, overall make the album redundant.

Colombian producer duo The Rudeboyz, who are longtime collaborators, add a distinctive latino flair. They specialize in playing the keyboard and using synthesizers and have a reputation in the urban genre with “dembow”, a spanish rhythmic sound hailing from Jamaica, that is highly recognizable by its repetitive drum pattern.

In “Parce,” Maluma sings about how he blames his lover for being a cheater in slick Colombian slang:

Todo fue tu culpa, me saliste h**apu*ta, me saliste media actriz” meaning, “everything was your fault,, you came off as a bastard, you came off as an actress.”

With “Hawái,” Maluma returns to tugging at the heartstrings of his fans. With melodic guitar over funky hooks, he sings about a lost lover, now in another man’s arms, insisting she would be better off with him. 

Deja de mentirte la foto que subiste con el diciendo que él era tu cielo,” go the lyrics. “Stop lying to yourself, the photo you uploaded with him saying he is your everything.”

Rating: 6/10

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