Though you wouldn't guess it from the prosaic title, 4 represents a quantum leap in sophistication for A.B. Quintanilla and company. The signature metallic thunk of their cumbias has given way to new

Though you wouldn't guess it from the prosaic title, 4 represents a quantum leap in sophistication for A.B. Quintanilla and company. The signature metallic thunk of their cumbias has given way to new stylistic fusions. "Contigo," framed by Spanish guitar and Latin percussion, exemplifies the new approach. Guest artists abound —Juan Gabriel spryly revisits his 1971 hit "No Tengo Dinero," accompanied by the joyous vallenato-rap of El Gran Silencio. The Kings' four English R&B cuts are less inventive—top 40-serviced "Don't Wanna Try" resembles Force MDs' "Tender Love," while a softheaded rap revival of New Kids on the Block's "Please Don't Go Girl" is redundant. This album is well-poised to go beyond the act's regional Mexican/Tejano base, making inroads with rock-en-Español

and alterna-Latin buyers.—RB

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