Iconic Mexican artist David Alfaro Siqueiros once declared: “No hay más ruta que la nuestra.” As one of the fathers of Mexican Muralism along with contemporaries like Diego Rivera and José Clemente Orozco, Siqueiros’ oft-quoted line, which loosely translates to “ours is the only way,” was praising the sociopolitical mobilization of Mexico’s oppressed lower classes by disseminating the spirit of communist revolution through his art.
Now, inspired by the complexities of Siqueiros’ revolutionary sentiment and adding their own sense of whimsy, Mexico City-based label Piratón Records has released its second installment of No Hay Más Fruta Que La Nuestra, an all-female compilation of producers and artists from across the Americas and a feminist call to arms to reshape a hyper-masculine music industry.
In a statement, the young label explains that No Hay Más Fruta Que la Nuestra is meant as “a slap in the face of curators, promoters, radio personalities, journalists, and others in music culture who, upon being questioned about the absence of women artists in their programs, festivals, parties, and articles, lazily respond by saying ‘there are no women making music.’” Though the album is meant as a slap, the overall effect is more akin to a Chuck Norris-style roundhouse kick, as the compilation shines with international talent and eclectic sensibilities ranging from the delicate, the ominous, to the flat-out bizarre.
Piaka Roela is a prime example of the album’s diverse treasure trove of underground artists. Her song “Cherry-Wave” is a sublime exploration of the sweet spot between noise and shoegaze, where she subtly incorporates a dance beat that elevates the track into a prismatic new dimension. On the other hand, Juárez-based producer Conejx rains doom down on the listener with “Appleseed,” the kind of dark tribal incantation typical of moody electronic scenes in border cities.
The Caribbean also makes a brief but titanic splash on the compilation, with dope dominicanas Mula showing up as the coolest girls in school with their effortless “Chinola.” Not to be outdone, PAUZA, the duo billed as Cuba’s first female electronic duo, drop in with the infectious rumba rhythms of “La Farufa,” perhaps the album’s sunniest moment. Lovable weirdos also find their place on Fruta, as with the monotone nerdcore of Chile’s Planta Carnívora on “No Pasarán!” and the avocado-centric boss battle playing out in Argentine producer Rrayen’s “Palta.”
No Hay Más Fruta Que la Nuestra completely ignores the trap of male comparisons and consolation prizes, by curating material that is within its own universe. The biggest takeaway from this project should be Piratón Records’ desire to reframe the conversation from one of suffrage to one of celebration and genuine discovery. And like Siqueiros all those years ago, what better place to put that message than directly into the art.
No Hay Más Fruta Que la Nuestra is out now on Piratón Records.