New Music Picks: Isabella Castillo & Valentina, Yahritza y Su Esencia, Estevie, and More

MÚSICA By 2023-04-10T17:51:23-04:00April 10th, 2023|

Welcome to LATINA’s weekly roundup of the best new music. This week’s list features Isabella Castillo’s big duet with Valentina in the movie La Usurpadora The Musical, Yahritza y Su Esencia’s cumbia bop with Grupo Frontera, and Melanie Martinez’s album Portals.

Also on the list: Estevie and DannyLux’s dreamy collaboration, Mariah Angeliq’s sexy track “Peligrosa,” and Coi Leray’s remix with Tokischa. Plus, Robi’s rock-infused return and Gotopo’s fresh twist on tropical music with Don Elektron.

Isabella Castillo and Valentina, “Cosas Del Amor”

Many Latin hits from the nineties were compiled for the movie La Usurpadora The Musical, which is now playing in theaters. One of the standout moments on the soundtrack is Isabella Castillo‘s beautiful duet with RuPaul’s Drag Race star Valentina. Together, they recorded a rendition of the classic “Cosas Del Amor” by Vicki Carr and Ana Gabriel. The song about one woman helping another through heartbreak hit home for Castillo, who was divorcing her ex-husband Matías Novoa at the time. “[Valentina] was also going through a difficult moment, so we bonded and she became my everything in that moment,” Castillo told LATINA. “Me and Isabella, we went in!” Valentina added. “We let you have it! We felt all those feelings.” Their heartfelt cover was mashed-up with Alan Estrada’s version of Ricky Martin’s “Vuelve.”

Yahritza y Su Esencia and Grupo Frontera, “Frágil”

Yahritza y Su Esencia gets into the cumbia groove for the first time. The Mexican-American trio teamed up with the new kings of the genre, Grupo Frontera, for “Frágil.” In the emotional cumbia track, Yahritza Martinez and Grupo Frontera’s Adelaido “Payo” Solis III trade verses about wanting hearts that can withstand being broken. “Making this song was a great experience for us all!” Yahritza y Su Esencia’s guitarist, Armando “Mando” Martinez, told LATINA. “The guys are all really funny and easy going. When we shot the video, the energy was so organic and relaxed and that made the shoot fun.” Last month, Grupo Frontera brought out Yahritza y Su Esencia as special guests at Tecate Pa’l Norte to perform the song for the first time.

Estevie and DannyLux, “Triste Verano”

Estevie , the musical project by Sarah Silva, is blending her bicultural upbringing in her music which celebrates her Mexican roots. Estevie gives regional Mexican music an alternative edge in this dreamy duet with sierreño sad-boy DannyLux. “‘Triste Verano’ captivates the feeling of being so blinded by the love you have for someone that you refuse to see that they are not good for you,” Estevie told LATINA. “I’m so happy I got to include Dannylux on the track since he is the king of sad music.” The song was released on Ricky Reed’s Nice Life label. DannyLux will perform at both weekends of Coachella later this month.

Gotopo and Don Elektron, “Piña Pa La Niña”

Gotopo is shaking up the Latin music scene with her global perspective. The Venezuelan singer-songwriter blends her Afro-Indigenous roots with elements of European music from Berlin where she is now based. For her new single “Piña Pa La Niña,” she teamed up with her trusted collaborator Don Elektron. Gotopo gives tropical music a club-ready makeover with her juicy dance track. “I love how tropical songs used to sound so simple lyrically, but were really playing a thin line between innocence and naughtiness,” she told LATINA. “In my song ‘Piña,’ I settled for the most tropical of options to honor the vulva: the Guava, pineapple and the papaya.” Gotopo’s Sacúdete EP will be released on May 19.

Coi Leray and Tokischa, “Players” (Remix)

After collaborating with artists like Madonna and Rosalía, now Tokischa is teaming up with Coi Leray. The Dominican superstar was enlisted by Leray for a remix of her single “Players.” The song has become one of the biggest hits of the year and it’s known for sampling “The Message” by Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five. Though Tokischa is known for globalizing dembow music, she shows her fierce flow can fit into any genre. She sings in Spanglish while saying with Leray that “girls are players too.” When talking about being an in-demand collaborator, Tokischa told LATINA last year, “It’s really nice, coming from my country, which is like so little, but at the same time, our culture is so powerful. It’s traveling all around the world. Everybody wants a piece of the Dominican Republic.”

Mariah Angeliq, “Peligrosa”

Mariah Angeliq is following up her empowering song “Ricota” with the sexy “Peligrosa.” In her latest single, the rising Puerto Rican star sings about her struggle of getting over a past relationship when sex brings them back together. The alluring reggaeton romp is a part of her “selfish era.” Last month, Angeliq told LATINA, “I’m being selfish with myself and I’m being unapologetic about it, so stayed tuned.” She is hard at work on her debut album, which she hopes to release later this year. After performing “El Makinon” with Karol G at Puerto Rico’s Hiram Bithorn Stadium earlier this year, she will be hitting the stage at Miami’s LGBTQ+ Pride event on April 15.

Melanie Martinez, “Death”

After Melanie Martinez killed off her popular “Crybaby” persona, the character was reborn this year in her biggest hit yet, “Death.” In the twisted, trip-pop banger, the singer of Dominican and Puerto Rican descent celebrates her fearless evolution as an artist. With her latest album Portals, Martinez leans fully into dark themes while coming through with the bright and biting tracks that she’s known for. “The mission of this record is to offer a perspective of true togetherness and immortality,” Martinez shared in a statement. She continues to push her alternative sound to new places like in the otherworldly “Void” and the playful “Spider Web.” Portals proves that Martinez is in a pop universe of her own.

Robi, “Playboy”

Robi is entering his rockstar era. The rising Puerto Rican singer dominated the reggaeton market with last year’s hit “Pantysito” alongside Alejo and Feid. Now he’s showing his sexy swagger can’t be contained to one genre. Robi blends rock-infused angst with trap beats in his new single “Playboy.” He sings about partying like there’s no tomorrow in the genre-bending anthem. “This song is very important for my career,” Robi told LATINA. “It represents a change in my sound and aesthetics as a singer. ‘Playboy’ drastically combines the two musical universes that I have in mind when I’m making music: rock and urban music.”

LATINA New Music Picks are published every Monday.

Lucas Villa is a freelance music contributor for LATINA. His work is featured in Rolling Stone, Billboard, Teen Vogue, MTV News and W Magazine.