After his foray into Caribbean rhythms in Galería Caribe, Guatemalan singer/songwriter Ricardo Arjona returns to his pop troubadour ways.

After his foray into Caribbean rhythms in Galería Caribe, Guatemalan singer/songwriter Ricardo Arjona returns to his pop troubadour ways. The resulting album—perhaps Arjona's best to date—highlights an inquisitive, imaginative artist willing to expand the boundaries of the genre with often stunning results. Santo Pecado kicks off with the guitar-driven "El Problema," a compilation of short, incisive, repetitive phrases—a classic example of Arjona's capacity to achieve universal appeal without ever dumbing down the content. In sharp contrast is "La Nena," the harrowing chronicle of a child's kidnapping, set over a minimalist piano motif that expands to full orchestral accompaniment. Arjona can get too clever for his own good, notably in the baroque "Sr. Juez," but the lyrical and musical quality of this collection allows for self-indulgence.—LC