14 New Songs to Listen to This Week From Kevin Kaarl to Ivonne Galaz

Lead Photo: Photo by Ingenio Local.
Photo by Ingenio Local.
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This is our weekly compilation of bite-sized reviews of newly released songs by our talented music writers. Discover new favorites, read nuanced criticism of the week’s hottest releases, and much more. Who knows, you might walk out of this with a new fave or two. Some of the featured artists include Kevin Kaarl, Ivonne Galaz, and Lia Clark with Pabllo Vitar. Follow our playlist featuring these tracks and more on Spotify or Apple Music.

Kevin Kaarl - “mis compas tan aquí”

Sometimes it’s difficult to see beyond one’s all-consuming pain and heartache. But indie-folk singer, songwriter, and guitarist Kevin Kaarl knows that the key to healing his wounds is to surround himself with good company. The Chihuahua native’s earthy vocals unwind beside breezy acoustic chords and feathery synths as he self-soothes with each repetition of his minimalist mantra: “Hoy no pienso nada mal/Solo quiero disfrutar.” Kaarl leads the way with an infectious sense of optimism in this stripped-down, feel-good track and blissful ode to his crew of ride-or-dies. – Nayeli Portillo

Ivonne Galaz - “Normal”

Regional Mexican music has a way of capturing grieving emotions. Following her single “Ojitos Lindos,” Ivonne Galaz—the first woman to be signed to Rancho Humilde—dropped “Normal” off her seven-track debut album, Jupiter. The album’s focus single is a heartfelt song that describes the loss of love, on top of a strong, melodic acoustic guitar that complements her deep vocals. Moreover, towards the middle and closing of the track, the guitar’s eerie and higher pitch provides a nostalgic touch that goes perfectly with Galáz’s sorrowful lyrics about losing your one true love. – Jeanette Hernandez

Lia Clark & Pabllo Vittar - “SEREIA”

Brazilian drag powerhouses Lia Clark and Pabllo Vittar are on board with this summer’s mermaidcore trend. The funk and pop singers’ highly-anticipated collaboration, “SEREIA,” is an electronic pop feast for the ears and eyes. The single sees the queens forgetting about their exes—who didn’t want a mermaid, for some reason—in favor of dancing all night. Their loss! “SEREIA” is, without a doubt, a huge moment in LGBTQIA+ pop culture. Clark and Vittar’s respective star continues to rise, and it’s inspiring to witness. — Chelsea Quezada

Six Sex, Ms Nina - “Arrodillate”

Argentine perreo should be on everyone’s radar. Boasting stars like Taichu, Sara Hebe, and Sassygirl, the scene has grown into one of the most audacious and boundary-pushing on the continent. Doe-eyed bombshell Six Sex has climbed through the ranks with her own unique journey from raver vixen to e-girl, and now full-on perreo goddess with the release of her latest EP 6X. Among the record’s many standout collaborations with Mexican reggaeton stars like Ghetto Kids and Mad Fuentes, “Arrodillate” stands out as an unapologetically Argentine thesis statement on bellaqueo. Featuring guest bars from Ms Nina and stellar production from trap whiz Taiu, the song’s commanding lyrics are pretty straightforward: Kneel and surrender your body to the rhythm. – Richard Villegas

Ivenno - “Algo de ti (feat. 1982)”

Hailing from a small town in the shadow of Ecuador’s Andes mountains, Ivenno is a new voice in the burgeoning Zoomer music scene coming out of South America. He released a debut EP, Pobre Miserable Part. 1, late last year, and now drops his newest single, “Algo de ti.” The song is a tongue-in-cheek bedroom pop ballad about gauging whether a platonic relationship can become something more romantic. Ivenno sheepishly apologizes for having a crush, but his lyrics contain a humorous tone to them as well. Producing duo 1982 gives the track a lo-fi pop/R&B flavor that’s reflected in the music video as well with its DIY aesthetic. — Juan J. Arroyo

Lika Nova - “Dame Una Señal”

Flirting and dancing are fun activities, especially when they are combined together, which is something Colombia’s Lika Nova knows a thing or two about. The band specializes in ‘80s-flavored dance rock that never forgets that melody and heart reign supreme. “Dame Una Señal” is a prime example of their approach, with their disco-flavored drums, wobbly synths, funky guitars, and tender vocals that deliver the hooks with ease. “Dame Un Señal” has a blast with the will-they-won’t-they premise of the lyrics that will have you rooting for love to triumph over everything. — Marcos Hassan

Garotas Suecas - “Gentrificação”

Six years after dropping their last album, Futuro do Pretérito, Brazilian band Garotas Suecas are ready for their comeback this June with 1 2 3 4, their new full-length, which includes single “Gentrificação.” They recurred to psych-splashed blues as the perfect vehicle to tell the band’s own Tomaz Paoliello story of, as you may have guessed, gentrification in his former São Paulo neighborhood, which he ultimately had to leave after the building he was living in was torn down to build a condo building. It’s a story as old as news that was never told this charmingly, and, as they sing on the lyrics, it will continue to happen in a never-ending cycle. – Cheky

Alex Eugenio - “Amores De Colores”

Summer love is in full bloom in Alex Eugenio’s “Amores De Colores.” Inspired by the different “shades of colors found in bougainvillea flowers,” the singer-songwriter’s second album, Veraneras, ebbs and flows with both new and recently-ended relationship energy, making it the perfect soundtrack for sunny days and winding down at a nighttime campfire. The singer-songwriter’s latest single is a gently-crafted bolero spun with airy dream-pop textures like loungy choruses and reverb-heavy guitar twangs. – Nayeli Portillo

JEDET, Ms Nina, BEA PELEA, Kenya Racaile, Lizz - “DevoToto”

Spain is getting in on the dembow action. The Spanish actress and singer JEDET—also known as Carmen Jedet Izquierdo Sánchez—formulated a sensual, fast-paced banger alongside Ms Nina, BEA PELEA, Kenya Racaile, and Lizz to get the summer poppin’. The hot track is designed to be a female empowerment anthem that celebrates diversity, freedom, and self-assertion, and that’s exactly what the baddies delivered. With a booming perreo-ready beat, a catchy chorus, and risqué verses, the quintet slayed the single that is described as the first-ever dembow made in Spain. – Jeanette Hernandez

Mariposa - “HIELO”

Rising Colombian-Italian rapper Mariposa’s newest single, “HIELO,” is a three-minute trip through her mind. She’s been open about her mental health and ADHD in past singles like “Mentiras,” and she gets a little deeper in her latest offering. Although she wants the diamonds and the luxury, she raps about wishing for peace and wanting to escape from her own brain and disappear. The Amsterdam-based artist’s debut EP Otro Mundo is out next week, and it will include themes of family, cultural pressures, female empowerment, and more. Complete with a spunky Y2K image, Mariposa’s point of view and messaging is what makes her special. — Chelsea Quezada

maJa - “A Vivir En Desacuerdo”

The Dominican pop scene is thriving. If shimmering 2023 releases from Letón Pé, Solo Fernández, and Mediopicky hadn’t already made that apparent, newcomer maJa is here to add some ethereal earnestness to the mix. “A Vivir En Desacuerdo” is the first single from her forthcoming EP , produced by Solo Fernández’s Gian Rojas and accompanied by a surrealist Jorge Guillén-directed music video. Wavy drums and synths cushion maJa’s breathy vocals as the rookie chanteuse grapples with the transition from adolescence to adulthood in dreamy pop fashion. – Richard Villegas

Fux Beat - “DIABLITA”

Miami-based Puerto Rican producer Fux Beat has found success with pop artists in the past, winning a Latin Grammy for his work on Sebastián Yatra’s album Dharma and producing hits for CNCO. Now he’s embarking on another career—that of a solo act. His EP, One Up, releases today with three tracks, including the promo single “DIABLITA.” Teaming up with fellow producer Bassto, he creatively incorporates classic video game sounds from the 8-bit and 16-bit era and crafts catchy trap and alt-R&B beats that compliment his raunchy lyrics and double entendres. It’s a polished effort from someone who already knows how to make projects shine. — Juan J. Arroyo

SoFTT - “Papi De Azúcar”

Kablito and Trevor McFedries strike back with their most frenetic track yet. Taking ‘90s bubblegum techno-pop and pushing it to the limit to deliver something saccharine sweet and irresistible, they conjure an energy and don’t-give-a-fuck attitude that verges on hyperpop excesses. “Papi De Azúcar” comes through with four-on-the-floor beats—all subwoofer-rattling kicks and all—cheesy synths, and Autotuned hooks about, well, sugar daddies. It’s a fun and horny track that reminds you that silly dance music can be brilliant when you blast it at your house party like it’s the best rave ever. — Marcos Hassan

DJ Perro - “Mambo, Loretta & Luca”

Who knew that a little hunger-induced frustration could bring us a piece of outstanding avant rock? That’s exactly the spark that ignited “Mambo, Loretta & Luca,” the new single by DJ Perro, even though it doesn’t really have to do anything with food. This is not a rising DJ star but a Puebla quintet that eludes genres like it’s a sport, and this song comes ahead of their debut album’s release. It’s a quirky instrumental dance rock number that can be enjoyed by chiptune, metal, and progressive rock fans alike, and it has distorted guitar riffs for days and days. There’s no use in trying to resist this groove. – Cheky