marco flores

NorteñoBlog has pretty much made its peace with boring ballads about corazones and the hombres who break/nurse/fondle them, so this week’s Mexican Top 20 comes as a pleasant surprise. Most of the new songs are fast! Or at least midtempo, which often sounds like “fast” around this lot. (When Arrolladora’s devious mujer destroyed their collective soul, she also apparently destroyed their ability to play faster than 60 bpm.) Almost every inch of this new batch is perfect, from the bottom to the top:

At #20, Leandro Ríos, of superfun rhyming exercise “Debajo del Sombrero” fame, is now a no-good cheating bastard. But he’s really tortured about being caught “Entre Ella y Tú,” so that’s gotta count for something, right? Oh wait — HE’S NOT TORTURED AT ALL. As long as you’re content with the amount of Leandro you’re getting, what’s the problem? The jaunty accordion gave him away.

In at #19, El Bebeto finally has an official video for his mariachi ballad “Besos Nuevos,” and it’s sort of porny. I’ve been pulling for El Bebeto since his astonishing 2011 debut album, and he’s been disappointing me ever since, but this mariachi move may be better than I first suspected. So far he lacks the authority of Vicente Fernández or the improvisational flights of José Feliciano, but arrangement and tune are both solid.

Los Huracanes once again do the thing where they hire attractive young people to act out their song in the video, the song (at #17) being “Debajo del Puente.” Otherwise they’d have to portray the mujer’s angry rifle-toting papá, a thankless role. It’s a fine swinging waltz with excellent tuba work.

What’s this? Regulo Caro‘s year-old “Soltero Disponible,” already a big hit in El Norte, is in at #16? It still sounds good.

But not quite as good as #15, because NorteñoBlog is a sucker for the cumbias of gallo-rific Zacatecan dancing machine Marco A. Flores. “Amor de la Vida Alegre” is indeed alegre, and it leads off his new 20-song compilation, which I’m guessing lasts all of 30 minutes. (Still need to hear it.) Flores is like the Ramones with better beats, Rae Sremmurd if they were fast, early Madonna with a better voice. He makes termite art of the most gnawing and forward-thinking sort. He spends half the song crowing over just drums and tuba. Pick to Click!

Los Horóscopos are at #12 with their aforementioned Espinoza Paz cover “Estoy Con Otro En La Cama.” It’s not fast, but it’s still the most vivid cheater’s ballad you’re likely to hear today. Imagine the Terrazas hermanas and Leandro Ríos trapped in the most dysfunctional romantic coupling since Gone Girl.

(Espinoza-on-the-beat also has a tempoless guitar ballad at #4. I wanna listen to it again as little as you do.)

At #3, Banda Los Recoditos are hitting with another quickie drinking song, “La Peda.” Their 2010 song “Ando Bien Pedo” was big everywhere, even topping the U.S. Hot Latin chart, unusually successful for a banda tune. It still gets plenty of Chicago airplay. We’re all basically enabling them at this point.

What else? The continent’s best singer Julión Álvarez has a decent tune at #11 and, at #7, Recodo is tasting your saliva. (Fruity, lingering hints of roast beef.) And this is just the “audience impressions” chart! Over on the “number of spins” chart, we continue to keep an eye on América Sierra and her reliably decent “Mi Gordito”.

These are the Top 20 “Popular” songs in Mexico, as measured by monitorLATINO. Don’t confuse “Popular” with the “General” list, which contains many of the same songs but also “Worth It,” “Can’t Feel My Face,” Calvin Harris/Disciples’ “How Deep Is Your Love” (!), and some bangers by J Balvin and Gente de Zona.

1. “Piensalo” – Banda MS
2. “Para Qué Pides Perdón” – La Arrolladora Banda El Limón
3. “La Peda” – Banda Los Recoditos
4. “Sin Esencia” – Espinoza Paz
5. “Aunque Ahora Estés Con Él” – Calibre 50
6. “La Revancha” – Banda La Trakalosa
7. “La Miel de Su Saliva” – Banda El Recodo
8. “Después de Ti ¿Quién?” – La Adictiva Banda San Jose
9. “Te Cambio El Domicilio” – Banda Carnaval
10. “Por Qué Terminamos” – Gerardo Ortiz

11. “Pongámonos de Acuerdo” – Julión Álvarez y Su Norteño Banda
12. “Estoy Con Otro En la Cama” – Los Horóscopos de Durango
13. “Se Va Muriendo Mi Alma” – La Séptima Banda
14. “Ya No Soy El Mandadero” – Fidel Rueda
15. “Amor de la Vida Alegre” – Marco A. Flores y Su Numero Uno Banda Jerez
16. “Soltero Disponible” – Regulo Caro
17. “Debajo Del Puente” – Los Huracanes Del Norte
18. “Por Si No Recuerdas” – Banda Los Sebastianes
19. “Besos Nuevos” – El Bebeto
20. “Entre Ella Y Tú” – Leandro Rios

“Fregones Mis Viejos” [aka “Chingones Mis Viejos”] – Diego Herrera
“Suena La Banda” – Los Tucanes de Tijuana ft. Código FN
“Retiro Lo Dicho” – La Estructura
“Diferentes Niveles” – Claudio Alcaraz
“No Te Voy a Perdonar” – Grupo Cañaveral ft. Maria Leon
“Abrázame” – Pesado
“Tu Mami” – Chuy Lizarraga
“Debajo del Sombrero” – Pedro Fernández
“Mi Vicio Mas Grande” – Banda El Recodo
“Por Si Estas Con El Pendiente” – Voz De Mando
“Me Interesa” – Alfredo Ríos El Komander
“¿Cómo Te Llamas?” – Banda La Trakalosa