Keeping track of all the great music coming out of the Spanish-speaking world is a task and a half. Lucky for y’all, we live for this stuff. 2013 had some stellar releases—Juana Molina’s Wed 21, La Mala Rodríguez’s Bruja, Dënver’s Fuera de Campo—and 2014 isn’t showing signs of disappointing.
We’ve already reveled in amazing releases this year (Fuckaine, AJ Davila), but here are 15 more to look out for. Some are itching to drop any second now, while others only exist as promises. Start saving money and computer space now, kids.
Oh Diamantes, how we love you. When word came from El Columpio Asesino’s reps that the Pamplona-dwelling band would drop their fifth album this year, we immediately started burning through our Diamantes MP3s. No word yet on the title or release date, or even the general direction of the album, but we have rightful high hopes. – PCG
BOMBA ESTÉREO / TBA / TBA
“Más lejos del fuego más cerca al bosque.” – Simón Mejía, Bomba Estéreo
The Colombian duo that exploded onto the mainstream in 2009 needs to prove that they’re still relevant in the current post-electropical world, while getting further and further away from their “Fuego” origins. No specific title or release date has been announced yet, but we can expect their next album to keep exploring the dreamy synth-laden tropical forests of Elegancia, while the always-sensual Liliana keeps experimenting with weird hairdos. – JD
ASTRO / TBA / TBA [Nacional Records]
“El alma de Astro está ahí intacta, pero creo que ya se nota mucho la madurez de la banda”. – Andrés Nusser, Astro
We’ll readily admit that we love these guys. But how could we not? Their 2012 self-titled album was nothing short of wonderful. They also left us craving for more last year with the release of their Red Bull Academy Studios piece, “Hawaii.” The quartet is currently holed away in their hometown of Santiago, Chile, working on new material of which little is known about (probably because it’s still being written as we speak!). Either way, they’ve pieced together a few things already and the band claims that it’s more on the electronic side and features a larger palette of colors and sounds. – AFR
ALEX FERREIRA / CINEMA TROPICAL / SPRING
Few can argue that Alex Ferreira is not only a link between Spain and Latin America—musically speaking—by bringing sounds together and collaborating with people from all over the Spanish-speaking world, but also an incredible songwriter who is always looking for different sounds to dress his great songs. For his forthcoming album, the Dominican-born musician has gone to Chile to record with Andrés Nusser of the band Astro, so our predictions are that the LP will be electronic, psychedelic, and shoegazy. Alex has blogged about his arrival to Santiago and he wrote that the album will “feature tons of machines.” Expect the unexpected, except for the songwriting level Alex has already displayed in different clothes. – MH
CALLE 13 / MULTI_VIRAL / MARCH 1 [EL ABISMO]
After breaking up with Sony, the future of Calle 13 became the focus of a lot of speculation. For a while there was talk about the brothers doing separate solo projects. Residente even went as far as announcing he was moving to New York and recording an album in English. Multi_Viral will be the title of Calle 13’s fifth album, their first to be released under their own independent label, El Abismo, and all we know about it so far is the inclusion of “El Aguante” and that combative track with stellar appearances by Rage Against The Machine’s Tom Morello, singer Kamilya, and WikiLeaks’ most-wanted fugitive, Julian Assange. – JD
CENTAVRVS / TBA / SPRING [CASETE]
“Es la producción a la que más tiempo hemos invertido, es nuestro primer larga duración y de alguna manera se ha definido mucho más el sonido de la banda que ya habíamos comenzado en los primeros 2 EPs”. – Centavrvs
With two solid EPs under their belt and a whole lot of momentum coming off 2013, Mexico City’s Centavrvs is ready to drop their debut LP in the next few months. Last year they teamed up with Hello Seahorse!’s Denise Gutiérrez for one of our favorite songs and videos of the year. We’re hoping for the same kind of magic on their full length, a fusion of electro, cumbia, regio-folklore, dance, and ballad. Each Centavrvs song has a fleshed-out inner life all its own, so we’re excited to see what worlds they craft in 2014. – PCG
LOS MASTER PLUS / TBA / SPRING
All it took was a hilarious paisa-fide cover of Daft Punk’s “One More Time” for us to fall in love with Los Master Plus. The cumbiatrónica duo of El Comanche and Larry Mon kept us laughing and dancing with other great dance-while-you-laugh covers of Radiohead and Kings Of Leon, but one can only keep a schtick going for so long, no matter the talent. That’s why the duo will release an album of completely original tunes later this year.
The currently untitled album is set for release this April. It will also include guest appearances from Kinky’s Gil Cerezo (who seems to be on everyone else’s albums these days a la Snoop Dogg or Pitbull), Camilo Lara, and Facundo, with “Suave Leve” as the debut single. – AFR