M.I.A.
Arular


5.0
classic

Review

by Matthew Dreany USER (18 Reviews)
April 4th, 2006 | 25 replies


Release Date: 2005 | Tracklist


Something that doesn't happen every day is when a classic album comes out, the album that will be heard and loved until the sun burns out, the album that will be picked apart for decades by so many people, these albums are quite rare. You know the ones... But you don't know all of them. Some classics are very ahead of there time, and might not be understood right away, but with time, comes understanding. A great example of this is Autobahn by Kraftwerk. To this day Kraftwerk virgins are hearing something so differemt, I can only imagine how people in the early 70's took it. With time, came understanding, and Autobahn has garnered extreme respect (maybe overshadowed by the slightly less classic Trans Europe Express, but I digress).

Call me crazy, go ahead. Wouldn't be the first time I've heard that regarding this issue, but I believe that when the dust settles, and M.I.A. has released a coulple of albums and shoots up to Eminem, Usher, The White Stripes etc. plateau, critics will look back at Arular and see something that wasn't there before. I see M.I.A.'s career panning out like Björk's: She will carve out a new genre that is as uncopyable as those nifty new 10 Dollar Bills. And like Björk, she will have a very strong fan base, that are just straight up geeky when It comes to her (I'm already one of them)

On the surface, to the casual listener, Arular sounds like a genre crossing experiment, with nice beats and an odd and (to some) an annoying voice (once again, like Björk), but to the deep music fan that spends more time with music than sleep, this album is a masterpiece, like nothing ever heard before. Wha genre do you put her in? She has a Reggae voice, Electronica beats, Rap lines, and a Punk attitude. What do you do with her? Who cares, just sit back and jump on the M.I.A. bandwagon, because she is a superstar in the making.


1. Banana (Skit) - Those who know me know my policy, no skits reviewed, that said, all the skits are awesome and I never skip them.

2. Pull Up The People - M.I.A. comes out swinging with a very great beat and beneath the hook are good lyrics, If you don't know M.I.A.'s history, learn it, it'll help with enjoying the album better. In this song M.I.A. describes the troubles of Battle and her hook is unrelenting until the end of the song
4.5/5

3. Bucky Done Gun - The song that made me track down M.I.A. and this album. The beat sounds familiar because it is looped Rocky horns, and it deserves a 5 for finding a way to not make looped rocky horns sound annoying alone, but it gets a five because her verses are great on this, and the pounding drums make it both dancable from a musical standpoint, and listenable from a lyrical standpoint.
5/5

4. Sunshowers - This song may be the most genius on the album. The first time I heard the song, It appeared as if it was a sweet song about someone, which, following the previous 2 songs, seemed on that this was such a sweet song, but the more I listened to it, the more I realized the it is the exact opposite of a sunny, sweet song. It is about racism. And even talks about a man getting murdered because he associated himself with Muslims. The fact that this song appears as something completely different amazes me
5/5

5. Fire, Fire - The Most Unrelnting beat on the album, pure electronica here. The lyrics are pure combat mixed with musical inspirations, with the hook being "Competition coming up now / Load up. Aim. Fire! Fire! Pop!" but drops inspirations to people such as the Pixies, beatles, Lou Reed, the Beasties (Beastie Boys), "Missy on a Timbaland" (A Missy Elliot Song Produced By Timbaland). Just an awesome song all around.
4.5/5

6. Dash The Curry Skit - N/A

7. Amazon - Easily my favorite song on this album. This song gives me goosebumps every time I hear it. It's definately her most descriptive song. It is about her getting kidnapped from Acton and being taken to the Amazon. Where at first she is frientened and begs to go home, or at least to be able to contact her family. but towards the end of the song she shows growing signs of Stockholms Syndrome (A syndrome where kidnap victims sympathize and sometimes grow to love their kidnappers) "Minutes turned to hours and became our dates
when we shared raindrops that turned into lakes Bodies started merging and the lines got grey. Now I'm looking at him thinking Maybe he's okay" And the hook that started out as "Hello, this is M.I.A. , Could you please come get me" Becomes "Hello, this is M.I.A. , It's OK You forgot me". Just a masterpice song in a masterpiece album.
5/5

8. Bingo - The most Reggae song on the album. Very poppy and likeable, which is a relief to some, because a lot of this album is dark, but this song is very upbeat and likeable
4.5/5

9. Hombre - IMO the most underrated song on the album. The song is about being in a relationship with a man who is cheating on his girlfriend/Wife, who turns out to be very desceptive. He promises her a family and a new life but doesn't deliver. This is such a great songs, and one of my favorite beats on the album.
5/5

10. One For The Head Skit - N/A

11. 10 Dollar - The most Rap inspired song on the album. Another great pounding beat (Probably the best on the album) about a Sri Lanken Protistute that basically had sex with men to get a Visa, she describes the situation and girl wonderfully with very clever lines "F**k gold, she was a platinum digger / Shakin ass, makin moves on a mover" Definately and album highlight
5/5

12. U.R.A.Q.T. - This song made me feel dumb, I had no clue what the title meant unil my fifth listen (You Are A Cutie), This song is about a girl who is trying to steal her boyfriend "Dt-dt-dt on your mobile phone, Dt-dt-dt on your mobile phone. You f**k my man and wreck my home I'll get my bro to rob your phone"
The song like 10 dollar, is very clefverly written with plenty of metaphors and decsriptive lines. Another great beat that samples the Sanford & Son theme, M.I.A. really shows her alents at everything in this song.
5/5

13. Galang - So much more than that song in the Civic commercial. The most dancable track on the album, virtually unskippable, with great lyrics tht probably won't make sense for a couple of listens. What may seem like a club track can be seen as a song about trafficing. it can be taken many ways, but overall, it is just a great song to listen to
5/5

14. [Hidden Track] M.I.A. - If I have one problem with this track, it's that it's hodden, I feel it's one of the lyrically strongest on the album and should be embraced fully. This song is about consumerism and leaders of countries control the flow and don't truly represent most poeple. And no, It is not a great end to a great album it's an amazing end to a classic album.

Throw stones at me if you must, but there is no way i'm changing my mind. There was a 1 month period where I honestly only listened to this cd, I listened to it at least 3 times a day and know basically every milisecond to this album, If anyone knows this album, it's me. and If you've ever heard the term "ZOMFG, I'M [insert Artist name]'s BIGGEST FAN" I'd like to let it be known that i'm that person. And very soon, whether you understood Arular or not, she will blow up. And i'll be right here, reviewing her, and telling you "haha, told you"



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Comments:Add a Comment 
"Freshly Baked"
April 4th 2006


583 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

This album is already Number 6 on my alltime favorites.

I tried to be as descriptive as I could. So I apologize if it's too long. Trust me, the rough draft made that look like a blurb. I hope atleast one person feels somewhat the same about this album.

NEDM
April 4th 2006


1113 Comments


Try not to do a track by track review. There lies your answer to reviewing whimsy

But it was good anyway ;)

pulseczar
April 4th 2006


2385 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Pretty good review, not really different from mine in terms of opinion I guess. The whole "I'll be the one to get everyone into MIA" really doens't make sense though, considering I wrote a 4.5 review of this album 3 or 4 months ago... You really sound like a huge fanboy though, that really doesn't help you. Other than that, and the spelling errors, you did good.

"Freshly Baked"
April 4th 2006


583 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Even if i Hated doing TBT's (which I don't i love them) i'd still do one for this, I wouldn't dare leave a track on this album unreviewed (except for the skits)

And yeah, I'm not even gonna hide it, I'm a full fleged M.I.A. fanboy.This Message Edited On 04.04.06

pulseczar
April 4th 2006


2385 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Even if it is a favourite of yours, reviewing every second of it doesn't make it as helpful as if you didn't and did a different type of review.

Zebra
Moderator
April 4th 2006


2647 Comments


[quote=Gala]
Pretty good review, not really different from mine in terms of opinion I guess. The whole "I'll be the one to get everyone into MIA" really doens't make sense though, considering I wrote a 4.5 review of this album 3 or 4 months ago... You really sound like a huge fanboy though, that really doesn't help you. Other than that, and the spelling errors, you did good.[/quote]
That's basically what I have to say.

sgrevs
April 4th 2006


698 Comments


I've only heard I think 4 tracks from here, and they were all very good...not 5 material though.

The Jungler
April 4th 2006


4827 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

This is a pretty good review for a pretty good album. Sure it's got some great songs, but theres a lot of boring ones.
Great avatar Galapagos

"Freshly Baked"
April 4th 2006


583 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Name those boring songs, please. I don't find one second of the album boring, I just wanted to know the ones you thought were boring.

pulseczar
April 4th 2006


2385 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

If you're gonna say rap sucks at least back up your opinion *reports*

The Jungler
April 4th 2006


4827 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Name those boring songs, please. I don't find one second of the album boring, I just wanted to know the ones you thought were boring.

Dammit, I just went back and listened to the whole record, and it seemed way less boring than before, though alot of the beats and vocals are similar. Thanks for making me reconsider, though theres no way I'll ever like 10 Dollar, that song is incureably annoying.

The album gets a 3.5 from me
This Message Edited On 04.04.06

"Freshly Baked"
April 5th 2006


583 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

It's funny that the guy with a Brittney Spears avy says Rap sucks.

That's like Charles Manson calling Hitler evil.

And VagueDan, you're welcome for making you reconsider. I'm a fanboy, it's what we do.

pattern_recognition
April 5th 2006


950 Comments


Yeah except that he's not saying rap sucks, just that MIA sucks. As he said himself.
Does no-one actually pay attention on sputnik anymore?

Goldfrapp_Theremin
April 5th 2006


6 Comments


M.I.A, the only music labeled "hip-hop" I'll probably only hear. Love her.

"Freshly Baked"
April 5th 2006


583 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

I really don't consider her rap.

Personally i think she should have her own genre (a la Prince, Bjork, or Tangerine Dream)



Goldfrapp_Theremin
April 5th 2006


6 Comments


That's why I said 'labeled hip-hop".

Iluvatar
Staff Reviewer
April 5th 2006


16089 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

I broke this cd in half after I took it out of my stereo. I laughed, I cried, I thought about why I listen to music at all anymore because of this cd.

So it wasnt that bad, but it was pretty much garbage.

The Jungler
April 5th 2006


4827 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

^^ I don't understand the hatred of this CD.... What kind of music do you usually listen to?

Iluvatar
Staff Reviewer
April 5th 2006


16089 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

In hip hop? Anything involved with the Beastie Boys, Dan the Automator, the Anticon label (Deep Puddle Dynamics and Alias demolish this), Ice Cube, Eminem, Goldie Looking Chain, Quarashi, and if you want to count in trip hop, Portishead, Sneaker Pimps, DJ Shadow and Massive Attack. I really love Hip hop, I just think this is one of the most overhyped new artists in the genre.

Iluvatar
Staff Reviewer
April 5th 2006


16089 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

leik woa yes i did.

What about it?



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