Music: Inner Visions

A teen pop vocalist rediscovers her Latin side

Christina Aguilera seems too small to contain her voice. The 19-year-old singer's bare waist--so thin you'd think it could fit between two parentheses--looks too tiny to support the strong, soulful melismata that flow from her lips. In fact, Aguilera's talent seems to require more space than the teen-pop world can provide. While Mandy Moore and the like go comfortably about the business of churning out plastic pop--and Britney Spears manufactures successful distractions like her strip tease at the recent MTV Video Music Awards--Aguilera's vocals strain and flutter against the confinement of her songs, a sea gull in a parakeet cage.

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