A Sound of Thunder Working to Raise Awareness of the Catalan Crisis
You can be forgiven for being unaware of the current conflict in Catalonia. The mainstream American media has not been giving the story its due. The history of the region’s fight for independence from Spain is long and complicated (I encourage you to read this fairly brief overview of events), but for the purposes of our current discussion, what you need to know is this: the recent severe sentencing of multiple pro-independence politicians has led to massive protests, and those protests have been met with violent force from the Spanish national police. All is not well.
Which brings us to Washington, D.C. trad metallers and perennial MetalSucks favorites A Sound of Thunder. In 2017, after a referendum to make Catalonia an independent republic passed by an overwhelming margin, the band’s metal version of “Els Segadors” (“The Reapers”), which is the National Anthem of Catalonia, went viral (vocalist Nina Osegueda’s mother is Catalonian). After Spain’s constitutional court prohibited that referendum and Madrid dissolved the local parliament, the band was invited to play a show at the Barcelona Olympic Stadium to raise funds for political prisoners:
Unsurprisingly, then, A Sound of Thunder is now “doing all we can to bring awareness to the situation,” Osegueda tells MetalSucks by e-mail following a recent interview about the situation with Baltimore’s WBAL-11. “I’ve been getting hundreds of tweets of videos directly from our fans of police beating up unarmed protestors, a guy being arrested for putting out a fire, [and] counter protestors spreading Nazi/Francoist propaganda,” says the singer, sharing the below footage of these heinous events.
So what can the metal community do to help? “Right now the protesters are asking people to spread awareness, because the Spanish government has been trying to spread a false narrative,” says Osegueda. She recommends following the Twitter accounts Help Catalonia and Foreign Friends of Catalonia, both of which will keep you up-to-date on all the latest developments. The grassroots pro-independence group Catalans for YES, which is made up of Catalans and Scots living in both nations, is also raising funds to help spread awareness. Donate here if you can. Every little bit surely helps. Tell ’em A Sound of Thunder sent you.