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Allmusic 2019

Year In Review

Latin and world music's standouts this year featured Congolese collective Kokoko!'s lo-fi found object dance music, Angélique Kidjo's tribute to Celia Cruz, Rodrigo y Gabriela's passionate 'Mettavolution,' and a raucous party album from exiled Syrian musician Omar Souleyman.

440 / Juan Luis Guerra / Juan Luis Guerra y 440

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The godfather of bachata delivers an unabashedly romantic summertime record filled with a panoramic assortment of rhythms.

A-Wa

Bayti Fi Rasi

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The Israeli sisters' sophomore set is a rhythmic wonder of empowered global pop with nods to the past and eyes firmly on the horizon.

Africa Express

Egoli

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The pan-global collective orchestrated by Damon Albarn offers an exuberant hybrid of African and Western music.

Angélique Kidjo

Celia

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The Beninese vocalist pays tribute to a prime influence by reading the great salsa star's music through the lens of African musical tradition.

Claude Fontaine

Claude Fontaine

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The American singer wraps her songs in the style and fidelity of vintage reggae and Tropicalia on this warm, lovesick debut.

Combo Chimbita

Ahomale

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The second album from this simmering Brooklyn group expands on their cosmic approach to Columbian styles.

Gaby Moreno / Van Dyke Parks

¡Spangled!

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The gifted Guatemalan vocalist and the iconic American producer and arranger create an ornate, cross-cultural song cycle.

Ibibio Sound Machine

Doko Mien

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On their third full-length, the English Afro-funk outfit bridge the best elements of their previous records and extend them with infectious dance tunes.

Intocable

Percepción

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Working with producer Don Was, the premiere Tejano/Norteño fusion outfit hits another level with ballads, rockers and dances.

Itamar Borochov

Blue Nights

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An enveloping, nocturnal third album from the Israeli jazz trumpeter, further exploring his post-bop, Sephardic, and North African influences.

Juanes

Más Futuro Que Pasado

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The Colombian singer/songwriter collaborates with hot producers and artists as he weaves cumbia, vallenato, and guasca with rock, reggaeton, and soul.

Karol G

Ocean

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With a plethora of styles, moods, and an intimate delivery, Colombia's latest Latin pop superstar avoids the sophomore slump by delivering a gem.

Kefaya / Elaha Soroor

Songs of Our Mothers

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An elegant and compelling global fusion between the London-based collective and the Afghan singer.

Kokoko!

Fongola

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Wildly inventive Congolese collective from Kinshasa whose artful lo-fi dance music is made largely on hand-built instruments created from junk.

La Santa Cecilia

La Santa Cecilia

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A wildly diverse seven-track mini-album sung entirely in English. Its songs take on loss, grief, love, and the celebration of all life experiences.

Lee "Scratch" Perry

Heavy Rain

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Dub companion to Lee "Scratch" Perry's well-received 2019 collaboration with Adrian Sherwood.

Lila Downs

Al Chile

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Teaming with producer Camilo Lara and 180 musicians, the Mexican-American singer and songwriter delivers her most innovative recording.

Luis Fonsi

Vida

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First album in nearly five years from the romantic pop king balances strutting dance-pop, ballads, reggaeton, cumbia, and vallenato.

Maluma

11:11

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Following the success of F.A.M.E., the Colombian artist unabashedly swings for the crossover fences, mastering every pop style he tries on.

Marc Anthony

Opus

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On his first studio outing in six years, the singer and producer Sergio George adds innovative depth and dimension to salsa's lineage.

Omar Souleyman

Shlon

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The exiled Syrian wedding singer returns to the wild, soulful energy of his earliest albums here.

Ozuna

Nibiru

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Capping his most successful year in music, the masterful Afro-Latino reggaetonero launches his most ambitious outing to date.

Rodrigo y Gabriela

Mettavolution

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On their first studio album in five years, the guitar duo deliver a passionate program of new originals and an inspired Pink Floyd cover.

Sarathy Korwar

More Arriving

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On his heady sophomore studio outing, the London-based percussionist leads jazzmen, beatmakers, rappers, and Indian classical singers.

The Good Ones

Rwanda, You Should Be Loved

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The third set by the rural acoustic trio of Rwandan farmers pairs aching poignancy with themes of hope and beauty.

Tinariwen

Amadjar

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The revered desert blues collective recorded their fascinating eighth album in the open air of a Saharan camp.

Xylouris White

The Sisypheans

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On their fourth long-player, the international duo use dirges and folk ballads to explore the unknown.

Rodrigo y Gabriela