Rita Indiana Returns with “Como el Dragón,” a Fiery Metal-Dembow Blast

Lead Photo: Photo courtesy of the artist
Photo courtesy of the artist
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La Mostra is officially back. Years ago, the Dominican artist had famously declared she was done with music, choosing to focus instead on her work as a novelist (among other artistic mediums), but that’s not exactly how things went down. Whatever fueled her return, we’re here for it.

Today, a decade after her groundbreaking debut El Juidero, Rita Indiana has released the video for “Como Un Dragón,” an electrifying metal and dembow mash-up.

In the video, her person is intimidatingly transformed by sharp, angular blue makeup and a powder blue buzzcut. Rita Indiana’s motions are serrated as she dances in this idiosyncratic setting—a universe her and director and partner Noelia Quintero designed.

“Regresó La Mostra para comerse las decenas,” she threatens.

And this release is just the beginning: More of this world will be revealed in a full-length album, Mandinga Times, due in June.

In a press release, Rita Indiana offers details about the track’s construction and inspiration: “This first single is a good introduction to the album. It has a lot of metal but the framework is a dembow. There is a darkness cloaked in comedy. It has layers of Caribbean folklore and electronica. The result reflects my admiration for the theatricality of bands such as Os Mutantes, Aramis Camilo and Iron Maiden.”

Quintero, who also helmed videos for “La Hora de Volvé” and “El Castigor,” aimed to blend “the trauma of post-Hurricane Maria, German expressionist cinema and an avalanche of content gathered over the past 10 years to create a universe of paper and 3D animation.” In this world, Quintero adds, “living beings coexist with lethal technology which La Montra develops in her musical lab in this new album.”

Rita Indiana began collaborating with Eduardo Cabra (Visitante of Calle 13), who produced “Como un Dragón” and the rest of Mandinga Times, sometime last year.

Watch the immersive video below, and get pumped for what we assume—if “Como un Dragón” is any indication—will be a blast of fiery elucidations about our world. She’s already sending a little shade to the state of popular culture: “Beep beep, llegarón los camiones, a recoger la mierda que tu crees que son canciónes,” she warns.

Of course, Rita Indiana had no way of knowing the covid-19 pandemic would come. It is pure coincidence she titled the album with a “apocalyptic singer” in mind. But today’s “Como el Dragón” will be a much-needed empowerment boost for many, and by June, we think Mandingo Times will be a reinforcement of epic proportions.