Puerto Rican spark plug Ozuna enlists bachata star Romeo Santos on “Ibiza,” a compulsively listenable highlight of his brand new album, Aura. No Latin singer has sold more albums (313,000) in the first six months of 2018 than Ozuna; streaks of hits like the one in the middle of Aura reveal just why.
“Ibiza” starts with an acoustic guitar lick that remains blissfully genre-agnostic: It could be an introduction to another one of Santos’ come-hither bachatas, a Miley Cyrus pop smash from 2008, one of Jojo’s R&B earworms from 2004, or an indelible Babyface record from 1993.
It is none of those things, of course — it’s the latest Ozuna hit. The guitar is buttressed by a stolid reggaeton beat, and the two singers go to work. Usually in situations like this, the youngster (Ozuna) is boisterous and the veteran singer (Santos) is unflappable, but that dynamic is upended here: Santos’ voice is tense and volatile, full of melismatic quavers and dramatic confessions of love, while Ozuna remains even-keeled. They reminisce about a happy night spent with a member of the opposite sex in Ibiza; as Ozuna puts it, roughly translated, “love is pure danger.”
“Ibiza” is a boon for Santos, whose singles have lacked oomph since his 2013 mega-smash, “Propuesta Indecente.” This is not his first collaboration with Ozuna — they also teamed up in “Sobredosis,” which reached Number One at Latin radio this year — but it’s his best.
“Ibiza” also marks a turning point for Aura: After a series of meat-and-potatoes reggaeton records — and “Tu Olor,” which sounds like a shrewd remake of the indispensable single “Te Bote” — the album suddenly achieves lift-off. “Ibiza” is followed closely by killer collaborations with Latin trap star Anuel AA and the rejuvenated Dominican singer Natti Natasha in addition to an impressive, horn-filled, ska-leaning track titled “Aunque Me Porte Mal.”