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Los Chatarreros: The Art of Escaping Workers Oppression

Filastine & Nova – a mutimedia duo composed of Grey Filastine, LA-born, Barcelona-based audio-visual artist and Indonesian vocalist Nova Ruth, create dense transnational bass music, mixing dubstep with acoustic strings, percussive soundscapes off of an amplified shopping cart, hip hop, moombathon, dubstep, cumbia and a wide mix of global sounds.

Their goal: To create a different world and a radically different vision of the possible through the use of sound, video, design, and dance.

Their current project, Abandon, consists of 4 episodes incorporating video art, documentary, and music. Each episode features an individual seemingly trapped in low-valued work who finds escape in the arts – an Indonesian miner, a Portuguese maid, American office workers, and in the fourth episode released today, Los Chatarreros, African scrap metal scavengers in Spain.

Each evening hundreds of chatarreros, mostly undocumented African migrants, comb the streets of Barcelona for metals to fill supermarket shopping carts. Los Chatarreros follows one man’s night of work who finds escape in dance and percussion.

Today only, to celebrate the video release, download The Chatarreros track for free on Soundcloud.

The Chatarreros track will be included in Filastine & Nova’s upcoming Drapetomania LP album, which takes its name from a “mental illness” invented in 1851 as the “cause” why Black slaves fled captivity, part of the institutional scientific racism of the times.

Yet no doubt still today, it is important to take Filastine’s cue and leave today’s world behind as we build a new one firmly structured on the arts.

Check Catalina’s weekly show, Beat Latino, an exploration of the past, present and future of Latinx music.