Artists these days sing like to sing about vague concepts of love and hate; the calm and the hype…They take the road where many have blazed and try to redefine themselves. M.I.A. is one of the artists who have succeeded in carving a niche for herself. She is a female rapper of Sri Lankan roots who defies norms by putting out idealistic songs of stunning rhythm.
Proclaimed to be her last album, ‘AIM’ makes that statement too good to be true. The 17-track head banger offers the listener a nice heap of electronic beats mixed with ethnic authenticity while addressing present world issues. Out of the many tracks, here are the ones that have stood out…
‘AIM’ starts off with ‘Borders’; the track focuses on mass population. ‘Go Off’ exudes opposition and rebellion, driven by an assertive melody. ‘Bird Song’ is in two versions; one done by Blaqstarr, and another remixed by Grammy Winner, Diplo. Former Directioner Zayn makes an appearance in M.I.A.’s self-proclaimed, Swagistan, by delivering the smooth chorus for the single, ‘Freedun’. ‘Foreign Friend’ talks about inter-racial relationships and migration, in a song well represented by verses rapped by M.I.A. and a chorus’ complimented by Dexta Daps. ‘Finally’ is a catchy single celebrating individuality and uniqueness, while ‘Visa’ gives you taste of Bollywood groove. ‘Survivor’ speaks of empowerment while ‘The New International Sound’, featuring GENER8ION, uplifts with a perfect blend of vibe, lyrics and rhythms. ‘Platforms’ closes with its laid-back nature and final statement of respect.
‘AIM’ is an album that you won’t see climbing the charts, but a piece of work that will have people talking. This is an album that will undeniably be on DJs’ dashboards and dance groups’ mixes. While ‘AIM’ talks about liberation and breaking cultural barriers, the underlying message is driven by eclectic beats and an upbeat theme.
If you have ever wondered how it feels to have electricity jolt through your veins (figuratively speaking), M.I.A.’s fifth album could be the answer. It’s almost like seeing the Mona Lisa or the Taj Mahal for the first time. But isn’t that how true artistry is supposed to make you feel?