September 10, 2009

Test Spin: Pitbull

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“I’m not bi, I’m tri … I’ll try anything.” With this bold pronouncement, guest artist Ke$ha announces her flirtatious nature on a track from Pitbull’s fourth studio effort, Rebelution. The album is in the same vein as the rapper’s previous efforts — while Pitbull stays true to his Latin hip-hop roots, he also experiments with different modes of dance, which results in an album that is always surprising and entertaining.
“Hotel Room Service” ventures into electro territory, complete with a sample of a British house hit under a Jim Jonsin synth beat. The Eurodance track “I Know You Want Me,” with its uno-dos-tres-cuatro hook, is repetitive but also extremely addictive. Unlike as with many current rap artists, Pitbull’s guests are well placed and do not overshadow his solo songs, such as the other Jim Jonsin-produced track, “Call of the Wild.” Pitbull teams up with old collaborator Lil Jon on the crunk track “Krazy,” one of the album’s highlights. Featuring a call to the cities and peoples around the world during the bridge, it is bound to heat up the dance floor.
It is only when Pitbull changes gears and raps about society, in songs like “Around the World,” featuring B.O.B., that the album loses its teeth. Although one of the complaints about rap music today is that it doesn’t showcase social ills, Pitbull simply fits the mode of dance music — and that’s where he should stay. In that respect, the album is a success.