We are living through an era where more music is available to us than ever – whether it be via social media, streaming or apps. But despite this wealth of options, it can be difficult to cut through the industry hype, the homogenizing algorithms, and find something new and exciting.
In our weekly Nuevo Noise playlist, you’ll find some of our favorite releases of the week – from the most exciting new names in urbano to the burgeoning SoCal neo-Chicano soul wave and everything in between.
Alaina Castillo - "Valentine's Day"
This Houston singer’s lyrics feel more like the sweet, Hallmark offerings of a secret romance than any “true love” type antics, yet we love it. And even if dropping the V-word in January induces anxiety, this is still a worthwhile R&B pop track from a vocalist who really got her start last year. -Caitlin Donohue
Devendra Banhart - “Love Song” (Helado Negro Remix)
Devendra Banhart and Helado Negro have reached the mellowest point in their respective careers, so a new track gathering the two of them is a match made in heaven. Helado Negro’s take on Banhart’s “Love Song,” from his 2019 album Ma, is pure minimalist bliss, turning the already understated pop song into a cozy home where groove rules. -Cheky
Empress Of - “Call Me”
The female-centric soundtrack to Flória Sigismondi’s new horror flick The Turning, which features music from Kali Uchis, Mitski and more, includes a new track by Empress Of called “Call Me,” a gorgeous throwback ballad that instantly sets the mood to “dreamy.” She sounds lost and unworthy in the lyrics, co-written by soundtrack producers Lawrence and Yves Rothman, but there’s an optimism that seems to cover this song and its listeners in a warm blanket. -Cheky
Juan Pablo Vega & Esteman - "Eso Que Me Das"
A match made in Colombian lounge lizard heaven, effervescent hitmakers Juan Pablo Vega and Esteman have linked up for “Eso Que Me Das,” a delightful romp of sunny disco-pop and psychedelic 70s camp. Swirling synthesizers, vocal and brass percussion and enough paisley print to outfit an army of Twiggy clones make “Eso Que Me Das” an ultra groovy visual and sonic experience. -Richard Villegas
La Dinastía - "Ready Pal Party" (ft. Kieel & Landey Weey)
Of all the emcees who starred in Puerto, Veracruz’s golden era of reggaeton, duo La Dinastía have shown themselves to have the most staying power. Released by local label Sangre Pirata, “Ready Pal Party” is a reggae-inflected ride for both the notorious jarocho rasp of Magaña and the perreo-inducing vocal bridges of his partner, Baby King. –Caitlin Donohue
La Tiguerita - “Pikete”
With her new single “Pikete,” Barcelona MC La Tiguerita dives head-first into her Dominican roots. The song, presented by Rosa Pistola, features a fortified merengue beat with some cheeky nods to dembow, courtesy of Mexico’s DJ Chekesito. Meanwhile, the auto-tune-drenched lyrics on “Pikete” have us fully convinced we need to party with La Tiguerita pronto. -Cheky
Molina - “Vanilla Shell”
Copenhagen-based Chilean producer Molina has unleashed a brand new EP of forward-reaching, experimental synthpop titled Vanilla Shell, loaded with six brand new ethereal tracks that will leave your brain in a refreshingly puzzled stupor. Molina shows little interest in traditional song structures throughout, particularly on the title track, where she deconstructs melodies into stand-alone chapters of an overarching story. “Vanilla Shell” casually oscillates between folk and new age sounds, as Molina carefully weaves crashing synths into addictingly crisp woodwinds. -Richard Villegas
Sotomayor - “Menéate ‘Pa Mí”
With a fun balance between electronic programming and live instrumentation, Mexican duo Sotomayor take a new shot at merengue with their single, “Menéate ‘Pa Mí.” The purpose of this contagious club track is simple: It’s been carefully crafted to set our booties in motion, and since it seems impossible to resist, we’re going to go ahead and let it bounce. -Cheky
Speak - "Moneda Exchange"
Speak’s two-track EP with producer Caleb Stone has a slow, insulated winter’s touch. “Moneda Exchange” sees the Hair God in braggadocio mode, rapping on a laid back beat about pissing on Off-Whites and early mornings that come too quickly. -Caitlin Donohue
Taifa Yallah - “Causa”
Granada, Spain’s DELLAFUENTE has had a fantastic career as one of the most important urbano artists of his country; now, he’s extending his range with a new project. Under the name Taifa Yallah, the singer has tapped into Andalusian Arab aesthetics. On “Causa,” he mixes autotuned vocals alongside turn-of-the-millennium rock with strings, shredding guitar and moody sections. For rockeros and traperos who can’t seem to agree on much these days, “Causa” emerges as an exciting middle ground. -Marcos Hassan
Tónico 86 - "Hipersónica" (ft. Maf E Tulá)
Salvadoran synthpop outfit Tónico 86 are branching out far beyond the comfort of their gauzy electronic world-building, infusing their latest futuristic single, “Hipersónica,” with organic guitar playing, saxophone and expertly layered percussion. Enlisting the evocative vocal rasp of Costa Rican singer-songwriter Maf E Tulá, the track bubbles into a four-minute party through space, time and crowded Central American dance floors. -Richard Villegas