Every week, we highlight some of our favorite releases in a handy list. Although we try to cover as much new music as possible, there are so many stellar releases to talk about. Consider this our genre-diverse guide to songs we have on repeat.
Kaina - "Green"
We’ve craved more of Kaina’s hushed R&B for a minute, and now the Venezuelan-Guatemalan singer is finally back with new music. The Chicago artist’s breathlessly soulful voice lends itself well to “Green,” a meditation on ancestral bonds. “I’ve been through so many moons,” she coos, as heartwarming images of a chosen & blood family dinner of arepas flash across the screen. The jazzy, horn-filled production would make Mario Bauzá proud. –Isabelia Herrera
Jenn Morel - "Tra"
Of the many ascendant women in reggaeton, it may well be that Dominican-born and U.S.-raised Jenn Morel has the truest old school flow. Certainly she puts the shine on that claim with new track “Tra,” an homage to Don Chezina’s 1998 mega-track of the same name. One look at the clip — an exuberant, choreographed party video in which Morel showcases her effusive dancer’s sense of movement — will have you suspecting that Morel also has the capacity to fill a stage alongside the genre’s greats. –Caitlin Donohue
Jackie Mendoza - "Mucho Más"
Digital deconstructions of pop music tend to be more entertaining to make than listen to, so Jackie Mendoza’s “Mucho Más” is rather special. It’s an experimental bet, but one that’s catchy enough to fit comfortably on the radio. The Chula Vista, CA artist’s sing-song mantra falls somewhere between melodic ennui and a playground rhyme, while fractal synth stabs keep you on your toes. This is an early contender for the acid-tinged hit of the summer. –Marcos Hassan
Planeta No - "Sudaba"
Planeta No have been teasing a new sound since late last year, with singles “Peligro” and “Me Voy Pa Mi Casa” whetting our appetite ahead of the release of their new EP Raro. “Sudaba” is another piece of the dembow and R&B-flavored puzzle, perfect for sweating the night out on a crowded dance floor, just as the cheeky song title suggests. –Richard Villegas
Montoya - "Perla"
Italy-based Colombian artist Jhon Montoya is weeks away from making his ZZK debut with his new album Otun, but before that, he’s unveiling “Perla.” Here, the classically trained musician throws a beach party on Colombia’s Pacific Coast at dawn. Marimba notes embellish an understated techno beat, making us want to get lost in the music. –Cheky
Las Robertas - "Thunder Rider"
Tico indie rock OGs Las Robertas are back with an EP titled Together Outrageously and the biggest jam of the bunch is inarguably “Thunder Rider.” With its blend of 70s psych rock and old-school indie pop, it’s both a new wrinkle on the trio’s sound and the perfect addition to a spring road trip playlist. Points if you have a van with an airbrushed unicorn on the side. –Beverly Bryan
El Habano, Eme Malafe & Chino el Gorila - "Santo Perreo"
Rabid reggaeton fans in Mexico City’s fast-evolving urbano scene have been up on El Habano for a minute. The Cuban-born, Tepito-based emcee commands underground cred with his dense malandro flows. New single “Santo Perreo” is a venerational crew love joint that also marshals the talents of D.F.’s Eme Malafe and Chino El Gorila, a rising rapper from Uzielito Mix’s crew. –Caitlin Donohue
Cienfue - "Shining in the Dark"
Panamanian singer and multi-instrumentalist Cienfue has been teasing his upcoming album Life in the Tropics with a series of singles tailor-made for poolside cocktail parties. “Shining In The Dark” is his latest gem of tropical psychedelia, where groovy guitar riffs and distant synths swirl together to conjure images of vibrant sunsets and stolen kisses in quaint hideaways. –Richard Villegas
Matias Aguayo - “Pikin”
Chilean-German electronic legend Matias Aguayo returns with a single and video, announcing the release of a new solo album Support Alien Invasion in May. “Pikin” has a minimal techno vibe, but takes inspiration from the maloya music of Réunion Island, perfect for dancing and getting weird. –Beverly Bryan
GRLS - “Chemical Gardens”
Mexico City’s GRLS make electro-pop lightly veiled in psychedelia. Their new single is a garden filled with sonic floral embellishments, something that shouldn’t come as a surprise since members Lucca Necoechea Dellekamp and Diego Andlovin met at Berklee’s prestigious school of music. “Chemical Gardens” entices us to explore its verdant foliage thoroughly and carefully. –Cheky
De Osos - "This Kid In Love With You"
Mexican ambient and post-rock producer Arturo Luna (aka De Osos) just dropped a new EP showcasing a more minimal and delicate side of his traditionally jagged sonic explorations. On “This Kid In Love With You,” he hardly touches on his noisier influences, instead offering a stunning piece of modern classical music brimming with orchestral melancholy and youthful naiveté. –Richard Villegas
donbor - "Eternal Agony"
donbor’s music owes a lot to today’s trap-inspired production techniques, but also to the sweeping and melancholy arrangements of trip-hop legends like Portishead and Massive Attack. The instrumental “Eternal Agony” resembles a heartbreaking scene from a sci-fi movie projected into clouds of a smoke-filled club somewhere far off and mysterious. Whether you’re watching the film or are part of it is unclear, since the song’s creaky beats and detuned strings make the emotion palpable. –Marcos Hassan