My love of Bad Bunny pales only in comparison to my father’s love for Bad Bunny. Following the Leap Day release of Bunny’s surprise sophomore album, YHLQMDLG, standing for “I do whatever I want” in Spanish, folks on Twitter reached to hear my father’s opinion of the record. So much for my career. Well, the votes are in. I’ve conferred with my dad—who does not read tracklists, mind you—and we’ve concluded YHLQMDLG’s sleeper hit is none other than the breathless “25/8.”
Produced by Hide Miyabi and Elikai, “25/8” stands out across YHLQMDLG’s 20 tracks because it features Bunny in a hyper-energized rapper bag. True to the title, Bad Bunny is doing this rap thing. The slow build, and Bunny’s hitting a creaking high note before kicking the song into high gear, make “25/8” a thrilling experience. We never wait too long for Bad Bunny’s next trick; from the jump, we know something extraordinary is coming. Shouts and melodies meld together and then give way to Bunny belting in his upper register by the three-minute mark. We can imagine this one becoming the fan-favorite in an instant.
Peppered with witty punchlines and some of Bunny’s most breathtaking deliveries, “25/8” summons a collective “Wow!” from both myself and my Latin-trap-loving father. This song is four minutes of pure lyrical flexing, with melodic undertones, and in 2020, when songs are getting shorter to meet market demand, Bunny pulls this length off. “25/8” does not feel like four minutes of rousing raps; it feels brisk and electric to the touch. A technical marvel, “25/8” reminds skeptics of all the merits of the genres of Latin trap and reggaeton—how could anyone consider this music a fad at this stage in the game, anyway?
There are a lot of reasons to love Bad Bunny. His continued activism on the stage is one, and of course, his consistent output is another. Both my father and I find it so charming when Bad Bunny says his name on a track with rabid enthusiasm. We find it so enticing how he stretches flows and the range of his voice beyond its natural ends. YHLQMDLG and “25/8” cement Bad Bunny as a mainstay artist. X100PRE was no fluke—Bad Bunny is just this good.