14 New Songs to Listen to This Week From Alejo to Estevie

Lead Photo: Photo by Joaquín Mojica.
Photo by Joaquín Mojica.
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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 Alejo, Estevie, and Meridian Brothers with Cyril Cyril. Follow our playlist featuring these tracks and more on Spotify or Apple Music.

Alejo - “Gatita Pretty” 

With a combination of boyish and roguish looks, plus a talented pen that started getting him attention as a fresh-faced teen, Alejo’s career is off to a hot start that was all but inevitable. His first hit “Pantysito” alongside Feid and ROBI, was the kind of success most rookie artists can only dream of, and he’s hardly eased off the gas pedal since then. “Gatita Pretty” is his newest single — a love letter to the beautiful women who are his fans and adoration. The VIDBLY-produced music video shows him capturing their glory with his camera, as the song’s booming beat plays soundtrack to his cheeky, odeful lyrics. — Juan J. Arroyo

Estevie - “como yo”

“All’s fair in love and war,” isn’t it? In “como yo,” the emerging Mexican-American artist Estevie bluntly tells her ex-lover how she’s a better fit for him than anyone else. Boasting traditional música mexicana elements like a melodious, see-saw-like accordion, a deep bass, and guitar strings paired with her relatable post-breakup lyrics, “como yo” serves as another testament to why Estevie is the next generation’s cumbia pop it-girl. “como yo” is part of her newest EP Cumbialicious, which is out now. – Jeanette Hernandez

Meridian Brothers & Cyril Cyril - "Navaja Bogotá"

Anything involving Colombia’s Meridian Brothers is both a celebration of their country’s music and a reinvention of it, and this track is no exception. When Swiss duo Cyril Cyril visited Bogota recently, they made a point to record at the infamous Mambo Negro studios, jamming with main Meridian Eblis Alvarez, resulting in two amazing songs. “Navaja Bogota” is a trippy tropical groove that becomes something otherworldly as it progresses, letting an experimental edge dominate the sound yet never letting the groove falter. This is Latine experimental dance music of the highest order. — Marcos Hassan

VALÉ - “bololo”

Following up on her latest single “moody, dirty, sweaty,” VALÉ brings us “bololo,” an alt-leaning party that clocks in at less than three minutes. The track’s title is a slang term in her native Barranquilla, Colombia, that translates to a big, messy moment. However, this song is perfectly polished. Calling it “one of the coolest tracks” she’s ever made, VALÉ created it with The Fund, Mark Johns, and Kate Morgan. The experimental nature of “bololo” means that there’s much to listen out for: surprising lyrics, instrumentation, and more. — Chelsea Quezada

María Raquel - “Cumbia del Presente”

NYC-based artist María Raquel has been honing in on her craft as a vocalist in the cumbia and salsa worlds since the age of eight, singing beside her tíos at family gatherings and parties in her native Medellin. On “Cumbia del Presente,” one of the standouts from her debut album Mucha Mujer, the singer and songwriter’s rich, velvety vocals glisten over a pulsing double beat and hypnotic rhythms as she harkens back to the days of big-name divas packing smoky and swanky lounges. María Raquel’s warm but dynamic vocal delivery, live-recorded onto analog tape, adds to its stunning vintage feel. – Nayeli Portillo

Garoto 3000 - “Tateti”

During his years as half of visionary Argentine electronic duo Defensa, producer Juan Agustin Brottier became instrumental in blurring the lines of deconstructed club, ambient textures, and nasty perreo. Debuting earlier this year with his solo project Garoto 3000, the studio whiz has already showcased his versatility with hedonistic incursions into trap on “Indeleble” and baile funk on “Não Precisa DJ.” His latest single “Tateti” takes a softer approach, weaving delicate hyperpop synths with saturated dubstep bass lines as he serenades the tragedy of two friends drifting apart. It’s a heartbreaking slice of electronic pop designed to be metabolized on a throbbing dance floor. – Richard Villegas

Mito y Comadre - “Guajirando”

Venezuelan newcomers Mito y Comadre are set to release their debut album Guajirando on Nov. 17 through ZZK, and they just shared the title track, which is also their first-ever single. The duo’s quest to embrace their Venezuelan roots in club music is evident on “Guajirando,” as they mix Afro-Venezuelan percussion from the Caribbean coast and Massi Wayuu flutes to extend to us an invitation to dance all over their country’s territory while paying homage to its cultural riches at the same time. – Cheky

Binny - “MAMACITA”

Simply because afrobeats hasn’t crossed over with Latine music as quickly as people anticipated doesn’t mean it’s for lack of trying. On a larger scale, Ozuna has been pushing for more fusion, and in Puerto Rico’s indie scene, Binny has taken it up as his cause as well. Earlier this summer, he dropped an EP, El Gorrito, with major afrobeats influences. He keeps the vibes going with this week’s “MAMACITA.” Along with his longtime producer Z-Lon, he channels the genre’s energy that’s made it such a global hit and marries it with his own boricua swag and cadence. Like the best afrobeats songs, it urges you to move your limbs and sway all over the dancefloor. — Juan J. Arroyo

Aron Luix - “Bandida”

With its solid, echoing guitar intro, you could’ve easily thought Aron Luix’s “Bandida” was going to be a chill, alternative track. Turns out it quickly becomes an old school-reggaeton-inspired banger that oozes sexiness thanks to the provocative lyrics, bachata undertones, and pulsating beat. Specifically influenced by Héctor El Father’s “Esta Noche de Travesura,” the Dominican-American artist not only blends elements of reggaeton, bachata, and pop, but plays with their BPMs to keep the listener on their toes – or twerking on the dancefloor. – Jeanette Hernandez

Mendoza Hoff Revels - "Dyscalculia"

Avant-gardists Ava Mendoza and Devin Hoff unveiled a new collaboration that takes roots in jazz yet becomes something else. “Dyscalculia” is a riff-heavy, powerfully rhythmic track that becomes more interesting as things get out of control, breaking free from the limits of notes and rhythm for pure expression as it goes along. This duo knows that establishing a groove is essential, and tearing it down to build it up requires amazing skills and talent, resulting in a mind-altering musical meltdown in the best way possible, a different approach to making fire music. — Marcos Hassan

FRNCE - “Soledad” 

In “Soledad,” singer-songwriter FRNCE tells the story of her musical journey through the eyes of her inner child. Singing, dancing, and jumping around alone in her room would never lead to the obstacles she’s had to face in her real-life career. The heavy synth production adds to the childlike whimsy, almost like it was supposed to be a theme song to a beloved kids sitcom.  We’re led into a colorful world for the music video FRNCE directed, where she plays house. The Mexicali-born artist says that for her first time directing, she was “nervous, but [she] decided to go ahead and make the song even more [her] own.” — Chelsea Quezada

Matias Poro, Koko Mallen - “Therapist”

Queer Miami-based singer and songwriter Matias Poro crafts heartfelt pop-meets-R&B earworms that flirt with mellow reggaeton and the occasional trap-like breakdown. On his latest single “Therapist,” the balladeer tag teams with singer and bestie Koko Mallen for a synthy hip-hop-tinted rumination about reaching your breaking point. – Nayeli Portillo

Cometa Sucre - “Paredes”

Ecuadorian garage band Cometa Sucre found their groove in the run-up to their sophomore LP El Eco Eterno, releasing a string of singles that delved into electronic textures and poppier hooks. One of the fuzzier offerings on the new album is “Paredes,” which contemplates the mysteries that lie beyond the edge of life. The band’s existential quandaries glide over distorted guitars and off-kilter percussion that make for an almost prog but fully throttled ride of rock n’ roll bliss. – Richard Villegas

Devendra Banhart - “Fireflies”

Flying Wig, Devendra Banhart’s new album in four years, is finally out on Mexican Summer, and it includes the tender “Fireflies.” Producer Cate Le Bon’s hand can be felt all throughout the deliciously dreamy and atmospheric track, which finds Banhart in a contemplative mode, singing about the possibility of feeling regret and acceptance simultaneously in our contradictory human selves. – Cheky