Regardless of where you are in the world right now — whether you’re summering in Sydney or getting bundled up in Brooklyn — you can feel the anticipation for the new year building. These waning months inherently evoke a mix of both contemplation and celebration, for things left undone and for the possibility of things to come. With such a range of emotions, what can possibly soundtrack all of these sentiments?
Spotify RADAR, a roster of emerging artists all over the world who capture it all. From Italy’s San Soucis’ setting off the vibes with “All Over this Party” to Mexico’s Nathan Galante reminiscing with the ranchera of “Tiempo Fuera,” you’ll find a track that meets you where you’re at and can take you wherever you want to go.
Nathan Galante – “Tiempo Fuera” (Mexico, songwriters)
Nathan Galante may only be in his early 20s, but he’s already living among legends. The Tijuana-born singer-songwriter, who began writing music in grade school and kept that focus ever since, has worked with greats like Horacio Palencia and Edgar Barrera. One listen to his latest hit with Palencia, “Tiempo Fuera,” and his cultural influence is clear. However, it’s his modern take on the traditional rachera style of the past that makes him a singular voice of the present. A sensitive, old soul of a lyricist, Galante infuses his songs with bittersweetness, exploring the highs and lows of love and longing, all encased in an equally dreamy sound. It’s clear that his familiar yet fresh take has also captivated his country — Nathan is the youngest songwriter to hit #1 on Billboard Regional Mexican Charts.
Lyrics: Horacio Palencia and Nathan Galante
Producers: Horacio Palencia
grentperez- “Ego” (Australia)
As grentperez will describe his music, it’s “laidback chill sound with a lot soul.” And the description is spot on. One listen to any of his singles and you’ll hear the raw simplicity, underscored by DIY production, that blankets them all – not unlike his influences the Eagles and Musiq Soulchild. “Ego,” an accessible song about boundaries letting go, is one of the best examples of that. The easy approach is no surprise for the youngest of three Filipino kids, who came up writing poetry and singing in front of a camera in his childhood bedroom. There’s willing honesty and desire for connection in his work, and it is clearly resonating. He headlined a sold out tour in Australia this year and is now touring Europe and North America.
Lyrics: Grant Perez, Dan Henig and Linden Jay Berelowitz
Producers: Linden Jay
Hasan Raheem – “Joona” (Pakistan)
Soulful, contemporary, and addictive. Hasan Raheem blends indie and r&B into a stylishly smooth and catchy sound that can make any of his music a pop sensation. “Joona” is a testament to that. A song he wrote, recorded, and shot a music video for to kick off 2020, “Joona” was the perfect way to launch himself into a new year. The indie release, reminiscent of a track by Majid Jordan with a touch of Dijon, quickly rose up the ranks, helping to make him Pakistan’s first RADAR artist. The project put him on the map, which helped platform an even bigger hit in the club-bop “Peechay Hut.” With a constant flow of promising singles to date, Hasan Raheem’s upcoming debut album is poised for a global, mainstream breakthrough.
Lyrics Hasan Raheem
Villano Antillano – “Cáscara de Coco” (USA)
Villano Antillano’s “Cáscara de Coco” is a hit meant to hit. The single, which translates to the Caribbean saying “You are not a coconut shell,” is about power, strength, and justice in a future where, as she says it, “feminism triumphs.” Self-described as a “music’s very own villain,” her rallying revenge vibes come through hard here with its sinister mix of early aughts reggaeton and synthesized metal. Overall, the song’s energy remains consistent with what makes the Puerto Rican musician the revolutionary rapper she is. With her no holds barred approach to her art, she’s becoming a key voice of empowerment in the Latin queer and transgender artist community around the world. The fact that she’s become the first transgender and nonbinary artist to hit the Top 50: Global chart on Spotify is just another example of that.
Lyrics: Villano Antillano
Neoma – “Tears At Bae” (Andes)
“Tears at Bae” will make you feel transported back into a world of neon lights where synths score nightlife. A mix of lunar pop with an ‘80s flare, Neoma’s charting bop channels heartbreak in its lyrics and yet simultaneously an escape from that in its dreamy production. It’s easy to imagine yourself swaying to this late into the night, dancing in a crowd of people to the catharsis the song provides. And for even more to lose yourself in, the South American singer’s latest album Hyperreal is a disco, glam-infused pop odyssey that promises pleasure through any of your pains.
Producers: Danny Pauta, Levi Double U, Aaron Wey, Neoma
Ginebras – “Ansiedad” (Spain)
Ginebras is the indie pop band you’ve been missing. The quartet’s sound will make you feel like you’re in the ‘90s teen movie montage of your dreams and encourage you to sing out the angst you’ve been keeping in. That’s exactly how “Ansiedad,” dedicated to the lost and overwhelmed, will move you. With the song’s title translating to “anxiety,” the single is a roller coaster of emotion, literally like the song’s lyric video itself, but in it they’re all strapped in together. Consisting of Sandra Sabater, Magüi Berto, Juls Acosta, Raquel López, the band came together each in some kind of search for solace and connection, meeting each other everywhere from college classes to queer Tinder. Now, as a group, they’ve become a lighthouse for all looking for the same thing.
Lyrics: Ginebras ( Sandra Sabater, Magüi Berto, Juls Acosta, Raquel López)
Producers: Pau Paredes
Sans Soucis- “All Over This Party” (Italy)
Need some heat to add to your pre-party playlist? This track is made for you to dance to. Its eclectic combination of Congolese Rumba, electro R&B, and quintessential pop matches the energetic and assertive theme of its lyrics — touching on taking your power back, creating fun and safe spaces, and bringing together your best friends (here, they literally name them). Whether you’re living it up at home or living out loud in the world, you’ll find some inspiration in this hit to reclaim your individuality and your joy for life. To further visualize that idea, the accompanying video itself is a celebration of queer pride.
Lyrics: Giulia Grispino and Joe Brown
Producers: Joe Brown and San Soucis
Veigh- “Movimento” – Spotify Singles (Brazil)
Straight out of his first Spotify Singles session, Veigh’s “Movimento” (which translates to “movement”) is emblematic of the Brazilian rapper’s homegrown energy and versatility. Featuring longtime collaborators Nagalli, Bvga Beats, and Supernova Ent, the track is a bold blend of R&B and Pagode, a nod to his upbringing on the lively streets of São Paulo. It’s this palpable connection to his musical roots, and the hometown fans that follow him, that’s made him one of the most promising artists to come out of the country. Having emerged in 2019, Veigh is just getting started, but if the buzz around each new drop is any indication, we’ll be hearing a lot more hype around him in the months to come.
Lyrics: Thiago Veigh da Silva, Nagalli, Bvga Beats, and Supernova Ent
Producers: Nagalli, Bvga Beats
TYNSKY – “Magical” (Poland)
In TYNSKY music’s, there always seems to be a sense of movie magic. It’s no surprise that his first international success, “Give Me Some Love,” was actually composed for a film. The RADAR Poland artist, whose biggest influences include Ed Sheeran, has been a student of the craft, having taken part in songwriting camps across Europe. That’s all to say, he knows a thing or two about shaping universal emotions into rich stories. Take his rising hit “Magical.” Its grounded lyrics are complemented by a cinematic score-like sound that evokes the fresh air and freedom of the song’s subject, letting your guard down. If this single is a teaser for what’s to come on his debut album, expect to live through his songs like your favorite movie scenes.
Lyrics: TYNSKY, OS.SO
Composers: TYNSKY, Constantin Bodea, OS.SO
Producers: Constantin Bodea
moon tang – “i hate u” (Hong Kong)
Don’t let the soulful composition of “i hate u” fool you, moon tang’s lyrics are exactly how the title sounds. It’s one of things the Thai-Chinese singer does best: deliver a mix of the unexpected. Her life experiences mirror the same, being a young student who wandered around lost, imagining her future as one thing– being an actor, designer, musical theater performer– until finding her place in music. There, she’s able to channel her sadness, confusion, mistakes, and hope into something truly special. Yet despite the twists, turns, and false starts, it’s her unrelenting quest to discover herself through her sound that’s making her not only a rising star of Hong Kong, but of her generation.
Lyrics: moon tang
Arranger: Jerold Chu
Composers: moon tang, Gareth.T
Producers: Jerold Chu, Gareth.T