Fear not, this “versión oculta” doesn’t have any crazy withcraft or satanic overtones… in english, the title roughly translates to “hidden version” or “obscure version” so you can rest at ease and put your holy water away.
For the uninitiated, Mr. Rosa is an artist whose career spans decades and genres with his big break coming in the 80s as one-fifth of the most famous line-up of mega boy band Menudo along with some dude named Ricky Martin. The 90’s saw The Artist Formally Known As Robi Rosa eagerly distancing himself from his teenybopper past with a new solo career, a new stage name (“Draco”) and a new found love for all sorts of hallucinogens that fueled his new alternative rock sound.
Fast forward a decade and despite Rob’s Jim Morrison inclinations, he surprisingly was also responsible for the poptastic cheesefest that was former band member Ricky’s english language breakout hit, “Livin’ La Vida Loca”. Now, after apparently b*tch slapping cancer in the face, Rosa has returned to the business of making music with the recent release of his latest album, Vida.
The lead single, “Más Y Más”, is the first(!) duet between former boy banders Robi ‘n’ Ricky. I actually gave the whole album, including “Mas…”, a shot when it was initially released but nothing really jumped out and demanded my attention. What a pleasant surprise it was to then recently discover this alternate “Versión Oculta”, a darker, bluesier, thankfully Ricky-free interpretation that now has me thinking that the decision to dismiss the entire album might have been a bit hasty. The video perfectly captures the sexy vibe of the the new ‘n’ improved “Mas…” with its club-based, sepia-toned montage of Rosa decked out in grunge/goth formal wear surrounded by the vintage store fashionistas who love him.
I’m glad to see Rob Ro is back and it’s quite comforting to know that he’s got that “lovechild of Sting and Anne Rice” thing still on lock. Grade: B+
Also, it’s quite the coinkydink that I’m posting this on Ol’ Rob’s birthday so take a minute to wish the man a “Feliz Cumpleaños” why don’tcha!?
Check out Robi ‘n’ Ricky in all of their 80s boy band glory in the clip below…
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