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- Matangi by M.I.A.
7/10 Clinton Staff review, 31 October 2013
While I’m feeling that its a little early in the morning for the bump and grind of MIA’s bouncy new album, a tiny little man next to me is jiving like there is no tomorrow. Yes, that man is Phil and he is loving it. His little face has just broken into what could be construed as a ‘smile’. MIA has certainly upped the poppy ante on this, her forth effort. The album is as commercial as a balloon.
Opener ‘Karmageddon’ starts the album off in a slightly misleading darker territory, more like her older work, by the time ‘Matangi’ comes around she eschews conventional lyrics for simply listing countries over a deep dark dubified soundscape. ‘Only 1U’ is a little bit like the crazy frog song. Actually scrub that, its exactly like the crazy frog song. ‘Warriors’ blast this way and that, never settling, like a dog going to bed, twisting and turning without ever sticking to one thing. Despite all the sonic invention, MIA only really has one general style, a sort of busy, frantic dancehall and here it works from time to time, but obviously never reaches anywhere near the high water mark of ‘Paper Planes’ although how could anyone go wrong with that sample?
‘Come Walk With Me’ starts off like a sure fire hit, taking off its idiosyncratic delivery, the melody isn’t miles away from something Christina Aguilera might warble. It veers off into madcap dancehall territory on more than one occasion, produced, seemingly, by a hyperactive child. She’s certainly lively, though hard to love, this album despite its all over the place wandering is a definite shot at the top of the hit parade. Our delivery driver has just ordered a copy after hearing a mere snippet, proving its immediate and far reaching appeal.
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