Wednesday, March 30, 2005

I know it's lame to jump on the hype train late, and I know I'm not telling you anything you don't know, but Arular really is unbelievably tight like that. I can honestly say that it's the only album I can think of that gets progressively better as it plays. The first five tracks are just OK for me, but everything from "Amazon" on is absolute fire. It's also probably the best workout album I've ever heard; it actually made me feel like I could stay on the elliptical joint for more than 15 minutes (this thought turned out to be deceptive). As the hype enters its third or fourth cycle, there's a lot of debate swirling over Maya's constant Tamil Tigers namechecks, people asking if she's just glamorizing terrorism and exploiting Western fascination with the Other. In her Seattle Weekly review, Geeta Dayal described four levels of listening to M.I.A. Well, I'm stuck on level one. These beats and hooks are ridiculous, and that's all I need. If I can get past Cam'ron talking about "put your legs behind your head", I can get past a few vague references to terrorism.