The opportunities for classically trained Italian tenors in the Latin pop arena have been more than fully exploited by one Andrea Bocelli.
The opportunities for classically trained Italian tenors in the Latin pop arena have been more than fully exploited by one Andrea Bocelli. But "Luna," the opening track to Alessandro Safina's new disc, opens up a whole new realm of possibilities. Backed by an operatic chorus (reminiscent of a Verdi requiem) and sweeping symphony orchestra, Safina also gathers an extra edge with an underlying dance groove and an English-language sample that plays throughout the track. It's an intoxicating mix and one that's done with unfailing good taste. Unfortunately, the remainder of the album isn't nearly as adventurous. Rather, it falls into the pop/opera pattern already weaved by Bocelli and others. Still, Junto a Tí remains a compelling listen, as much for Safina's voice as for producer Romano Musumarra's exquisite orchestral arrangements, which tweak both pop and classical ears. An eponymous version of this set aimed at the English-language market is available from Interscope.—LC