"I Got U" (Radio Cut) - Duke Dumont feat. Jax Jones
"Love Sublime" - Tensnake feat. Nile Rodgers & Fiora
"For Edgar" - Holy Ghost!Played 20 times.
"Dance With Me" - Le Youth
"Stand Still" - Flight Facilities feat. Micky Green
"Just Another Night" - Icona Pop
"Together" (Lyric Video) - Disclosure, Sam Smith, Nile Rodgers & Jimmy Napes
"Together" - Disclosure, Sam Smith, Nile Rodgers & Jimmy Napes
"Crying for No Reason" - Katy BPlayed 0 times.
"Y.A.L.A." - M.I.A.
"An Open Heart" - Bright Light Bright Light
Matangi lives up to the deity its named after, taking in a confluence of genres including dubstep, noise, banghra, to create a work that’s daring, forceful and fascinatingly wild.
M.I.A.’s has been faced with a slew of controversies over the past three years. Between the divorce, child custody battle, scathing exposés and Super Bowl incident, and constantly delays to her new album, her life has been rife with stress. The biggest blow was probably the public reaction to Maya, her last record, which explored the ramifications of information technology within contemporary society. Critical consensus was that the record was a tuneless, paranoid affair devoid of any actual melody or relatable themes (though given the current affair of things both musically and socially, I find that hard to believe). So, in short, she has a lot to live up to this time around.
Matangi refers to the Tantric goddess of music and learning, an aspect that gave M.I.A. her concept, a compilation of musical ideas and politics. Even with last record being blasted for its paranoia, M.I.A. does not stray from discussing the politics of war, information technology and gender roles. In addition to the synthesis of thematic material, she also blends a plethora of disparate musical genres including dubstep, noise, rock, trip-hop, garage, and a wide palette of world folk genres. These musical shifts aren’t confined to track changes either, with a variety of the tracks possessing rapidly shifting harmonies, melodies and rhythms. It’s a beast.
Title track “Matangi” finds M.I.A. collecting all her groupies in a massive, glitchy, sample-ridden bhangra/dubstep banger in which she declares “it’s so simple, get to the floor”. “Warriors” finds her reaffirming her top dog status through a glaring dub/trap riff juxtaposed against a trap/bhangra chorus. “Come Walk With Me” and “aTENTion” both discuss the inner workings of information technology with “Walk” discussing the voyeurist and dependency aspects of various media platforms and “aTENTion” discussing the media’s relation to politics. “Come Walk With Me’s” sunny, swinging hip-hop rhythms are a nice cleanser to lead into the tense garage of “aTENTion”.
The back half of the album is not any less musically enticing especially with the springy, reggae rhythm of “Double Bubble Trouble” coalescing into a storming EDM/trap monster. Or “Bring the Noize”, a completely anarchic number into which she screams over a pounding noise track to reassert her status. But, that’s the thing about M.I.A., with Matangi, we’re completely satiated and ready to accept her once again as the true queen of the underground.
Listen to: “Matangi”, “Warriors”, “aTENTion”, “Y.A.L.A.”, “Bring the Noize”