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M.I.A’s latest album ‘Matangi’ worth a listen

Published: Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Updated: Wednesday, January 22, 2014 21:01

I should just change my column to be about the musician M.I.A. because that seems to be all I ever write about. This time, I’m writing about her new album “Matangi.”

Matangi, according to M.I.A, is the Hindu goddess of the spoken word and music.

Since M.I.A. is Hindu and a rap artist, it couldn’t be a more fitting title.

It also fits into the theme of naming most of her albums after family members and issues that mean a lot to her.

It’s not a smash like her most famous album “Kala” was, but there are still some great songs on the album.

The most well-known on the album is “Bad Girls,” originally released as a single a couple years ago. Another up-and-coming song is one that’s already been overplayed on a car commercial during many football games, “Y.A.L.A.”

Though in the commercial it seems like all she’s singing about is “fun” and “yolo,” this song is actually making fun of “yolo.” Going off the Hindu theme, Y.A.L.A. means, “you always live again,” talking about reincarnation, a more fitting term then “yolo” as she says in the song:
“What’s that even mean though? If you only live once, why do we keep doing the same s***?”

There are other good songs like “Karmageddon” and “Warriors” that incorporate the Indian sitar.

Then there’s “Lights” which is hypnotic and smooth as well as “Bring the Noize” which is fast and powerful.

But there are some downfalls to this album. Two songs in particular that I dislike are, “Exodus” and “Sexodus.”

They are both pretty much the same song, but “Sexodus” is a bit of a remix. A lot of the time, M.I.A. makes brilliant songs that are either fun to dance to or they can really get you thinking about politics of the day, but then there are some songs that are repetitive and don’t make a lot of since.

Both “Sexodus” and “Exodus” fit the latter, unfortunately.

Overall though, it is a pretty decent album worth giving a listen.

Most people know her for her more famous dance and rap songs that don’t really have a lot of deep meaning. But listening to her songs not just on “Matangi” but any of her other albums can really bring you to a different part of the world, and introduce western audiences to the politics of nations most of us didn’t even know existed.

This is what makes M.I.A. such an amazing artist (and why I write about her so much.)

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