Artists You Should Know: Mexican Artist Zentella Composes Radiant Guitar-Led Loops

Photo via Zentella

Mexican artist Zentella is here to enamor you with his mesmerizing guitar-led instrumentals, which radiate with internationally far-flung eclecticism. It’s the project of Tabasco-born Javier Zentella, a composer at Fermatta College of Music who currently resides in the Mexican Caribbean making music with fellow musician Germán Celis. The music of Zentella is defined by its creator’s deft compositions and the soul-gripping melody of gracefully rapt riffs that float within their genre-shifting soundscapes.


Please note: This post may contain affiliate links.

To listen to Zentella’s music is to traverse a wide breadth of influences that have played a part in shaping his sound. The collection of singles he’s shared on his SoundCloud represents the growing body of work that’s begun to take shape over the course of the last year. One that Zentella has spent recording new music as well as sharing it with fellow music lovers live in art & culinary spaces like El Manatí in Bacalar, Mexico (where our editor was vacationing and first discovered Zentella).


The first thing that strikes you listening to Zentella’s music is the transfixing guitar loops that overflow and haunt his tracks. Songs like “Semitranqui” are sizzling slow-burners that revel in every exquisitely warm riff that’s plucked from Zentella’s guitar. But it’s also the way his songs seem to fluctuate between the ancient and the modern: from the folkloric traditions of Tabasco and Veracruz to the warping influence of prog-rock and jazz/funk.

On “Amnesia” he overlays a sample of an impassioned conversation atop his singed rhythms, wrapping the listener in an ardent intimacy punctuated by slashing drum machines and warbling bass lines.

artist to watch in 2023

Diving deeper into Zentella’s discography reveals all the varying emotions expressed in his songs. From the quietly contemplative repetitions of “shishito” which unfold like a soothing lullaby to the sparse but elusively funky creations he orchestrates alongside Celis. There are the bubbling growths of electronic tones and jittery instrumentals that coalesce on “Me electrocuté” and the aptly named “Funky waves of sand,” which oscillates between the stimulating atmospherics of psych-rock and space-age pop.


For Zentella the goal of his music has always been to inspire some emotional connection with the sounds he organizes so meticulously — to sensitize the spirit in order to assuage it — and that’s exactly what his music does.

Visit Zentella on their website and Instagram to stay updated on new releases and tour announcements.

Words: Steven Ward

Listen to Zentella below!

Best Summer Music Festival in Southern California
submit your new song
influential black women femalesingers