Ruben Blades' musical genius lies not only in his gritty, expressive voice, or in the fantastic musicians he surrounds himself with, although it is certainly there. It is most strongly felt, however, in the strength of his poetic, evocative, yet realistic lyrics; this is Blades' greatest contribution to the evolution of contemporary salsa. His poetry is a central feature of Agua de Luna (8 self-penned tunes), and his themes are brought home all the more strongly by including both English and Spanish translations of the lyrics in the CD's liner notes. While literal translations are nearly impossible, the listener/reader is struck by the mood and emotive force of Blades' music all the more. Of course, the band kicks, the arrangements soar, and the "coros" rock. Agua de Luna is a superb effort from one of salsa's poet laureates.