Saoko, papi, saoko!
Rosalía has already teased the style and aesthetic of her upcoming album MotoMaMi, which is supposedly coming out in March–my birthday month!
After dropping the single “La Fama” featuring The Weeknd, the Barcelona-born artist shared the album trailer, officially announcing that we would certainly hear back from her in 2022:
Now, with the leading single “SAOKO,” we have the first tangible proof of the direction Rosalía’s music and style are taking with MotoMaMi, which I can summarize in three words: reggaeton, motorcycles, and long nails.
We all knew about Rosalía’s love for motorcycles and long nails–from the “Malamente” music video to her feature on the Vogue YouTube channel–but the reggaeton element is relatively new for a full-length project from Rosalía.
After the global success she had with El Mal Querer, she relocated to Los Angeles, where she was definitely influenced by Latin American sounds, as proven by her collaborations with J Balvin, Ozuna, Bad Bunny, Arca and Tokischa, among other artists.
Therefore, it made sense for her music to move in that direction. But is it something to look forward to?
I always say that an artist’s sophomore album after a major, ground-breaking debut will define whether said artist is giving in to the hype of the moment or if they’re resisting this urge to create something new all over again.
It was the case for Billie Eilish, and now it’s up to Rosalía to prove what else she has to offer.
Though I was not particularly excited about “SAOKO,” I’m not ready to jump to conclusions just yet.
After watching a few reaction videos on YouTube, I started viewing the situation from a different perspective. As jose m. asked in the title of his video about “SAOKO:” was Rosalía’s transformation for worse or for better?
In the video itself, however, he claims that this is not even the right question to ask. Instead, the question should be: is Rosalía playing safe or is she breaking barriers like she did with El Mal Querer, where she flawlessly mixed flamenco, pop and rap? Is her music moving forward or is it standing still?
And I think we got the answer with “SAOKO:” Rosalía is now looking beyond flamenco and embracing Latin influences.
Now, does it mean that MotoMaMi should be praised as a triumph before it even comes out? Absolutely not. No matter the artist’s intentions and efforts, albums should always be judged regardless of the story behind them.
But if we’re talking about La Rosalía, then I think we’re in good (long-nailed) hands.
El Rincón De Giorgio – TODO SOBRE ROSALÍA – MALAMENTE | SIGNIFICADO OCULTO LETRA Y VÍDEO
Jabi Kraken – EL MEJOR ANALISIS DE “PIENSO EN TU MIRÁ” DE ROSALÍA
jose m. – La Moda ROSALÍA ¿Por qué las Uñas?
jose m. – ¿QUÉ PASA CON ROSALÍA? ¿Cambió para mal?
JULIETA WIBEL – SAOKO ANALYSIS | Transformation and Gasoline 🔥🏍️
Rolling Stone – The Reinvention of Rosalía
Cover image credits: ROSALÍA