Nuevo Culture

Francisca Valenzuela Flirts with Reggaeton on Fierce New Single, ‘Héroe’

Francisca Valenzuela is not just a singer-songwriter; she is her own producer, a published poet, and founder of the feminist music collective and festival, Ruidosa. But now, with the release of her steely new track, “Héroe,” she is Joan of Arc, Wonder Woman, and Xena Warrior Princess — all rolled into one.

“I’m going straight for the fire,” she sings, “The moment has come/I will be my hero.”

A shape-shifting union between synth-pop and reggaeton, “Héroe” is the lead single off her upcoming fourth LP, La Fortaleza. Out this fall via Sony Latin, it will be the Chilean-American’s first studio album in over five years. If her previous one-off singles were any indication — take the brazen-faced dance track, “Tómame” and its more vulnerable cousin, “Ya No Se Trate De Ti” — La Fortaleza, or The Fortress, may see the genre-ambiguous Valenzuela venture into yet-uncharted territory.

“‘Héroe’ talks about the power that we all carry within to rescue ourselves,” writes Valenzuela in an email. “You can be your own villain or enemy. [I] have to remember that I also have the power to be my own hero. If I do not get up and go ahead, and self-rescue, nobody will do it for me. We are all our own heroes.”