Karol G is becoming really good at catching us by surprise, and also, surprising us. Witness her new single, “Provenza.” It was released with little anticipation on the eve of the 2022 Latin AMAs (where Karol G was the big winner, but was not in attendance). And the track itself is surprising in a way Karol G is more and more inclined to be.
Coming after a string of powerful, anthemic, rhythmic tracks, from “Tusa” to “Makinón” and to “Mamiii,” her collab with Becky G, “Provenza” feels like an impressionistic painting: Wistful and sweet, even gentle, but with an undercurrent of strength.
Singing over a lilting, calypso-esque beat, Karol yearns for an encounter with a past love — “Baby what’s up. Haven’t heard anything from you in a while; I was with someone but now I’m free, ready to relive old times, haven’t been out in a long time” — her vocals almost floating in counterpoint over the soft, but quick-paced bass line.
Despite the chant that arrives toward the end of the track, “Provenza” is more dance than urban, its vibe of freedom and joy augmented by a video that features only women — of all sizes and stripes — uninhibitedly lounging, swimming and dancing in a seaside town. And Karol — face practically devoid of makeup — embracing the liberty of it all.
If this is another take on empowerment, we’ll take it.