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Latitudes: International Music You Must Hear Now

The artist from Belgium known as Stromae poses in Paris in July 2013.
AFP
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AFP/Getty Images
The artist from Belgium known as Stromae poses in Paris in July 2013.

Globally, it's been a very busy month for music, especially at the intersection of art and politics. There's the brand-new Pussy Riot video from Sochi published Wednesday, as well a real groundbreaker of a video released on Valentine's Day by the Iranian legend Googoosh — one that celebrates LGBT relationships and apparently has already been widely viewed illegally within Iran itself.

But there is a lot of other great new music to hear — politically topical and not — plus the curious case of a years-old, Balkan-flavored track that's made its way to the heights of the American charts in a slightly different guise. Come take a listen.

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Anastasia Tsioulcas is a reporter on NPR's Arts desk. She is intensely interested in the arts at the intersection of culture, politics, economics and identity, and primarily reports on music. Recently, she has extensively covered gender issues and #MeToo in the music industry, including backstage tumult and alleged secret deals in the wake of sexual misconduct allegations against megastar singer Plácido Domingo; gender inequity issues at the Grammy Awards and the myriad accusations of sexual misconduct against singer R. Kelly.