MIA – // / Y /

Nah, we don’t get the abstract lettering of the title either but then MIA didn’t get to where she is by playing it safe. Her biggest hit to date, Paper Planes (as heard on Slumdog Millionaire), satirises our paranoia of terrorism and is punctuated by gunshots. An unlikely crossover, no?

Still, // / Y / doesn’t mess with the MIA formula. Like her previous albums Arula and Kala, it offers up collages of disparate sounds (drills, clinking ice cubes), well-placed samples (Grandmaster Flash’s The Message) and strange, compelling beats  served up with post 9/11 politics (Lovalot, for example, is written from the point of view of a black widow suicide bomber!)

She’s dangerously close to repeating herself but with so many thrilling moments, like the pummelling, fuzz-ridden Born Free, we’ll forgive her this once.


Review: Alison Grinter