Reggaeton’s untamed lioness
Perreando por Fuera, Llorano por Dentro, roughly translating to “Twerking on the Outside, Crying on the Inside,” is Spanish reggaeton star Ms Nina’s first LP. The singer has emerged as the face of the reggaeton subgenre, NeoPerreo, a growing cultural and musical phenomenon that has seen glimpses of mainstream success in the last few years. Building off of the sexually explicit, club-oriented themes of reggaeton, NeoPerreo is a new age form of self-expression that encourages sexual and artistic freedom, beyond all limits that have been previously set. Ms Nina describes NeoPerreo in a Billboard interview as a “party for everyone,” saying that “It’s about including everyone who loves Latin music and wants to feel the freedom of being themselves.”
On her newest mixtape, Ms Nina fully immerses the listener into a hypersexualized, digitally enforced world that relies more on the dancing aspect of the title than the crying part. Ms Nina’s love and admiration of Latin American music genres are evident throughout the tape. Lyrically, Nina is adept at switching between extreme sexualization and the mundane aspects of her daily life. These two features are often tied together through her love of partying and dancing while sonically, the listener is encouraged to follow in her footsteps through the swinging rhythms and cumbia undertones.
“Resaca,” the third song on the mixtape, combines common rhythms in Latin and reggaeton music with electronic percussion. On this track, Nina delves into her mental health, partying and her love of food and cooking with little transition between each one. She discusses the regularity of her sadness despite having everything she needs. Her grief often consumes her except for when she goes out to party, she says. She pushes her emotions away for the night but wakes up sad the next day. The cyclical nature of partying and waking up hungover and depressed is a theme for Ms Nina, but one that she does not seem keen on changing.
“La Diabla,” the fifth track on the mixtape, combines salsa-inspired melodies with a heavy kick drum and bass patterns. On the track, Nina further establishes her independence and resilience, often intertwined as opposed to in parallel with her untamed sexuality.
Perreando por Fuera, Llorano por Dentro, is an impressive conglomeration of sounds and influences that solidifies Nina’s position in mainstream music and the NeoPerreo movement. The singer’s empowerment through hypersexuality, freedom of expression and individualism is acutely pronounced and one cannot help but recognize the club appeal of nearly every song on this mixtape.