First Stream Latin is a compilation of the best new Latin songs, albums, and videos recommended by the Billboard Latin editors. Check out this week’s picks below.
Ricky Martin & Reik, “A Veces Bien Y A Veces Mal” (Sony Music Latin)
It took Ricky Martin and Reik long enough to join forces for a collaboration — but good things come to those who wait. The Puerto Rican artist and the Mexican trio deliver a beautiful pop ballad that marries Martin and Jesús Navarro’s (Reik’s frontman) dramatic-but-soothing vocals, effortlessly evoking pain and sorrow. “Sometimes I’m well, Sometimes I’m not,” they sing in the heartbreak song, produced by Andrés Torres and Mauricio Rengifo. “For us, Ricky is one of the most complete artists and huge in terms of talent and range,” Reik wrote on social media ahead of the song’s release. “We’ve been his fans for many years.” — GRISELDA FLORES
Yahritza y Su Esencia, “Esta Noche” (Lumbre Music)
Yahritza y Su Esencia, April’s Billboard Latin Artist on the Rise, continues to have us in our feels with the release of only their second single, “Esta Noche,” out this week under Lumbre Music. Similar to their debut hit “Soy El Unico,” the new track is a sad sierreño, with simple-yet-captivating requintos backing Yahritza’s mature power vocals. “Esta Noche,” which forms part of the group’s upcoming Obsessed EP, tells the story of a person who just met someone and is already infatuated. “I know we just met, my love, but I want to spend tonight with you/ I know I’m not in my six senses right now/ You took one of them and they were my feelings,” Yahritza sings to kick off the sincere track. The music video was filmed by Jaime Aquino in Florida, and marks the first part of a five-part production (the “Soy El Unico” video was part three). As of publishing this Friday (April 15), “Esta Noche” is currently on YouTube’s trending music page. — JESSICA ROIZ
Ana Isabelle, “Gloria” (WK Records)
Puerto Rico’s Ana Isabelle has largely sidelined her recording career while pursuing Broadway and acting, including a role in the film West Side Story. Now, she returns with her first solo single since 2013, the R&B/gospel single “Gloria,” co-written by Jean Rodríguez (Luis Fonsi’s brother). The track highlights Ana Isabelle’s dramatic vocals but leans more pop than theatrics, which bodes well for a much-deserved comeback. — LEILA COBO
Los Dos Carnales, “No Estaré Aquí” (AfinArte Music)
When your heartbreak story makes the news, it deserves its own anthem. Los Dos Carnales’ Imanol Quezada, one half of the norteño brother duo, narrates his own heartbreak story in “No Estaré Ahí,” an accordion-powered ranchera penned by Imanol. “You’ll remember the first roses I ever bought you, you’ll remember the date when we first kissed,” he sings. “But you don’t see me anymore and I’m still here.” To get his girl back, Imanol interrupts the nightly news to send out a clear message to his ex. Watch the video to see how it ends. — G.F.
Ecko, “Copacabana” (Universal Music Latino)
Ecko might have made a name for himself as part of Argentina’s trap movement, but the rapper, like many of his colleagues, has not shied away from making commercial music. “Copacabana” marks his latest rhythmic track — a mid-tempo, saucy reggaetón jam produced by Mozart Musik. Written by Ecko with his female fans in mind, the lyrics tell the story of a young lady who’s hard to get. The music video, filmed at a pool and giving major “Copacabana” vibes, is summer-ready. — J.R.
Robi, “ROBOT” (Orion Records/Interscope Records)
ROBI is part of the new wave of Puerto Rican artists who like many newcomers were discovered on TikTok. Following his Alejo-assisted “Pantysito,” which was fueled by a collaboration from Feid, this week ROBI presents his next musical number, “Robot.” But unlike the catchy reggaetón hooks in “Panty,” “Robot” is a head-bopping, punk-leaning, alternative track. In the music video, ROBI is in a hospital as a result form a heartbreak — because after all, he’s a human being with feelings, not a robot. — J.R.
Leli Hernandez, “Nunca Le Bajo” (Universal Music Latino)
Leli Hernandez’s new single “Nunca le Bajo” loosely translates to “I don’t quit.” Penned by the Dominican artist with Becca and Reggie el Autentico, and produced by Robi Molina, this fun track fuses tropical rhythms with bachata guitar tunes, combined with a liberating message in the lyrics. With her unique flow, Leli sings about rising above the obstacles that might appear along the way and still moving forward. — INGRID FAJARDO
Victor Manuelle feat. Miky Woodz and Marvin Santiago, “Vamo’ A Ver Si El Gas Pela” (Sony Music Latin)
Victor Manuelle’s fast-paced salsa with a cheeky name (“A Ver Si El Gas Pela” loosely translates to “Let’s see what’s what” or “Let’s see who knows their stuff”), is a challenge for which this little group is more than up to the task. “A Ver” is delicious. Irresistibly grounded in tight ’70s salsa beats, it gets its urban sheen with Miky Woodz’s rhythmic chant (because it’s a chanteo more than a rap), which acts as an ode to salsa, rather than a mere feature that overcomes the salsa intention. “A Ver” is a hats-off to the soneros of yore, whose version of diss tracks (or the tiraeras of reggaetoneros today) were their confrontational, far-better-natured improvisations or soneos. In “A Ver,” Manuelle brings that braggadocio with sly elegance, and adds the vocals of the late Marvin Santiago to the mix for effect. Jay Lugo, who produced with Manuelle, deserves a shout-out. This is contemporary salsa that blends past and present seamlessly. — L.C.