5. Julieta Venegas, 'Algo Sucede'
Julieta Venegas is a down-to-earth pop royal with grandiloquent songwriting skills. Blessed with a honeyed-yet-haunting voice and a sound that combines Latin folk, indie rock and serene pop, Venegas croons, questions and reflects in the piano-laced "Porvenir." Her masterful synth hooks are capable of entrancing any pop skeptic in the buoyant "Esperaba" while the accordion-driven "Ese Camino" boasts a Northern Mexican vibe. The beloved star bares her heart throughout, but the most gut-wrenching ballad is the upbeat "Explosión" about the 2014 tragedy of Mexico's 43 missing students. I.R.