MP3: Disco Volante - Born Free (right-click-save-as)
I don't care what the New York Times Magazine says, I love M.I.A. I don't think it's hypocrisy to speak for the voiceless when you're in the position to do so, even if you don't exactly share their circumstances. On the contrary, it's incumbent upon those of us among the "haves" to fight for the "have nots". If we don't, who will?
But to me, more important than the details of her advocacy of the Tamil Tiger separatist group of her native Sri Lanka, which are problematic to be sure, is what she represents in a more abstract sense -- globalism (as opposed to globalization), populist resistance, political engagement and the struggle of the weak against the powerful.
Politics aside, musically, I think M.I.A. is one of the most important artists of our young century. Her effortless blending of styles and sounds into something so new it often seems alien is matched by none. And she's definitely easy on the eyes.
Our lead off track to this week's playlist is Born Free, from M.I.A.'s much anticipated new album "/\/\ /\ Y /\ (Maya)" . If you haven't seen the video (banned from Youtube, see it here,) check it out, it's intense.
1. M.I.A. - Born Free (4:14) 2. Mc Paul Barman - Props (3:20) 3. The Free Design - Bubbles (2:16) 4. Os Mutantes - El Justiceiro (3:50) 5. Marvin Gaye - Inner City Blues (Make Me Wanna Holler) (5:33) 6. The High Llamas - The American Scene (4:32) 7. Piero Piccioni - Acapulco (2:51) 8. Joanna Newsom - The Book of Right-On (4:40) 9. toe - Say It Ain’t So feat. Hoshikawa Yuzuru (Dry River String, ex upandcoming) (3:42) 10. The Notwist - Trashing Days (3:24) 11. Flying Lotus/Dolly - Robertaflack (3:07) 12. Pink Floyd - Brain Damage (3:46) 13. The Tragically Hip - Sherpa (5:15) 14. I Love You But I've Chosen Darkness - According to Plan (4:37) 15. Joan As Police Woman - Endless Supply of Poison (0:49)