Boy Pablo album review

Nicholas Munoz, better known as Boy Pablo, has returned to the scene with his new album Wachito Rico. Munoz has risen to indie prominence in the past couple of years, largely thanks to his 2017 EP ‘Roy Pablo’ and 2018 EP, ‘Soy Pablo’, which featured several singles that took off, namely “Dance, Baby!”, “Feeling Lonely”, and “Everytime”. Past Boy Pablo projects prominently feature drowned out guitar riffs, heavy use of synths, and easily digestible lyrics on the topics of teenage life, romance, and maturing. This work is certainly listenable, but not even his most popular songs have excited me or stuck with me in the slightest, as is the case with the majority of the bedroom pop scene that continues to establish itself. Wachito Rico is no different: completely listenable, but it doesn’t stick even after multiple listens. 

 

Wachito Rico suffers tremendously from a monotonous and criminally non-offensive sound that makes this 40 minute listen feel like 2 hours. If there were an algorithm that could create the most average indie/bedroom pop tracks based on current trends, many of them would fit perfectly on this album. “I hope she loves me back” starts the record on a dark path of bland instrumentation and meaningless lyrics, the most painful of which have to be the opening words: “Staring at her, can't help it. Thinking 'bout her 'cause oh, my God she's beautiful. I can't believe she's mine, yeah.”; I had a feeling I would probably be in for a long one. The remaining 40 minutes are largely consumed by one indistinguishable song after another that are so average that they put you to sleep. Tracks like “leave me alone!”, “rest up”, and “come home” fulfil the basic requirements of radio friendly bedroom pop and don’t contribute a shred of artistry or creativity beyond that. 

 

It may seem that I am being too harsh on this record because, well, the music isn’t bad. The reason why I view this so negatively is because albums like this annoy me more than albums that I find objectively bad. I appreciate music that introduces me to something new, whether I like it or not. Wachito Rico is an annoying listen, I was constantly looking for Munoz to do something new, but it rarely happens. 

Thankfully, there are fleeting moments of brilliance on this thing, which will keep me interested in where Munoz goes from here. “Hey Girl” is an extremely solid pop song, super catchy. “Alelula” is an interlude which features better singing and more emotion than every song on the album except “te vas // don’t go”, which is the artistic and emotional summit of the album. There is no denying Boy Pablo has talent, but he needs to find some source of inspiration outside of making cookie cutter indie tracks if he wants to establish himself as a new wave artist with some serious traction. 

 

Fav Songs: hey girl, te vas // don’t go, aleluya 

Rating: 3.9/10 

Michael Barnes

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