The Charity Shop Countdown – Number 20


Kala – M.I.A

Bought from Childrens Society, Babbacombe

I’m not sure how many of the stories surrounding Mathangi Arulpragsam I believe.  According to her biography she was born in Hounslow, moved to Sri Lanka as a girl and spent a bunch time on the run in India (her father being a militant fighter in Sri Lanka). What I do get, is the fact that she is fiercely political and as such controversial and that comes across in her music, which is of course, bloody brilliant.

Its not just the music that I love about MIA, I mean the eclectic mix of Eastern vibes liberally sprinkled over the top of hip hop beats along side the clever samples are wonderful enough (more of these later), it is her lyrics as well.  One minute they are a hardcore political critique of a certain situation and the next they are just clever wordplay delivered in an enigmatic and nimble way. Then of course there are the singles, which are just mindblowing.

‘Paper Planes’ you will of course know and recognise with its cash register and gunfire samples.  The same can be said of ‘Boyz’ which is a close to an adult nursery rhyme as you are ever going to get.

Paper Planes


I mentioned the music somewhere back up the page, this album has something for everyone, you get reggae version of Bollywood staples, you get Algerian synth pop and you get downtown New York hip hop fused seamlessly with an Aboriginal didgeridoo and a maniac rap.

Mango Pickle River 



Fantastic stuff.



One thought on “The Charity Shop Countdown – Number 20

  1. Agreed. Excellent album. Not keen on her most recent one though, which actually sounded like she was running out of ideas. Not something I thought would ever happen.


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