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Kala


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Music

Image of album by M.I.A.

Photos

Image of M.I.A.

Biography

Once there was a girl named Matangi. This was 5000 years ago. Her father was an untouchable fearsome fighter and was a sage who gained sublime power through ascetic practice over thousands of years, and Matangi became known as a goddess of music and spoken word; she wasn’t a warrior but rather a minister sometimes referred to as the Queen of Queens. She spoke truth to power by ... Read more in Amazon's M.I.A. Store

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for 19 albums, 3 photos, discussions, and more.

Frequently Bought Together

Kala + Arular + Matangi
Price For All Three: £27.66

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Product details

  • Audio CD (13 Oct. 2008)
  • Number of Discs: 2
  • Label: Xl
  • ASIN: B001GCWRKM
  • Other Editions: Audio CD  |  Vinyl  |  MP3 Download
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (20 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 41,350 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. Bamboo Banga
2. Bird Flu
3. Boyz
4. Jimmy
5. Hussel - MIA & Afrikan Boy
6. Mango Pickle Down River - MIA & Wilcannia Mob
7. 20 Dollar
8. World Town
9. Turn
10. XR2
11. Paper Planes
12. Come Around - MIA & Timbaland
13. Paper Planes [Allstars mix] - M.I.A.
14. Boyz [Akon mix] - M.I.A.
15. Shells - M.I.A.
16. Get It Up - Radioclit & MIA/Santogold/Gorilla Joe
17. Far Far - M.I.A.
18. Big Branch - M.I.A.
19. What I Got - M.I.A.
20. Sound of Kuduro - Bukara Som Simesta & MIA

Product Description

London-based rapper M.I.A. found global critical acclaim in 2007 with her second album Kala. Featuring the singles "Jimmy" and the remarkably inventive and powerful "Paper Planes", Kala is expanded and reissued for new and old fans, featuring remixes by the likes of Akon and Allstars and a host of new songs. With her often politically charged lyrics mixing with electronic big beats, M.I.A. is one of the brightest talents to emerge from the UK in years.

Customer Reviews

3.9 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

16 of 19 people found the following review helpful By Joseph Devine on 13 Aug. 2007
Format: Audio CD
nearly three years on from her wild debut album Arular (and her mixtape with Diplo) M.I.A. has, with Kala, proven that she is an artist of great creativity and substance. With these new songs she has created an equally provocative record as her debut, if not more so, as this album melds more styles together in more unusual ways. Opener Bamboo Banga sets the scene and has the listener hooked as soon as the pulsing ragga rhythms take hold. "M.I.A. is coming back with POWER POWER!" she chants, over a tinny bollywood sample, and she is certainly right. The next track is Bird Flu, a song I liked but didn't quite know what to make of when it first dropped several months ago over the internet, but in the context of the album it makes alot more sense and segues well into Switch produced BOYZ, her current single, which is surely one of her best tracks and an absolutely huge stomping piece of work. 'Jimmy' is a cover of a classic Bollywood tune from Disco Dancer and adds a touch of tongue in cheek light heartedness to all the thumping clanging beats and viscerally eclectic instrumentation. As the album progresses the scope becomes yet wider, with didgeridoo-based raps(Mango Pickle Down River featuring the Wilcannia Mob, whose rapping is delightful, resulting in a playful collaboration), dub-step influenced mash-ups of classic rock tunes ('blue monday' meets 'where is my mind' both go together into a dark and intense melting pot to create 20 Dollar), stabbing synths and rolling rhythms (XR2) and her trademark political poetry. Further collaborations are with Afrikan Boy (raucous synthplosion 'Hussel') and Timbaland (the sleek album closer 'Come Around) add yet more diverse influences to an already busy album, yet it never gets too much.Read more ›
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13 of 16 people found the following review helpful By E. A Solinas HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWER on 29 Aug. 2007
Format: Audio CD
M.I.A. is colour, rap, dance, wild jungle rhythms and a mad fusion style. The Sri Lankan rapper blew people away with her debut album, but she's actually topped herself in "Kala" -- she takes the same ingredients as before and smashes them together into a wilder, tighter album full of deliciously wild electro-funk-rap with a world-music flair.

"Road runner, road runner/Going hundred mile per hour/With your radio oooonnnnnn," she drawls detachedly over a skittering beat and the sound of racing engines.

The dancey beat kicks in, as she announces, "I'm big timer, it's the bamboo banga/You'll be hungry like the wolves hunting dinner dinner/And we're moving with the packs like hyena ena..." Things really blossom with the next two songs, the frenetic tribal rhythms of "Bird Flu," and the Bollywood-dance, horn-heavy "Boyz."

Having hooked us in with three catchy songs, she expands her sound further: funky hip-hop, disco, distorted grimy raps, playfully violent pop, detached raps over electronic anthems, tribal house, and combinations of all of the above. It ends with a mellow, catchy tune that seems to be contradicting the whole album's mood, with M.I.A. saying "Calm down calm down CALM down!"

In the end, "Kala" is actually kind of intoxicating -- M.I.A. crams so much sound into less than an hour that it's almost a shock when your speakers go silent. Stylewise she hasn't changed much at all, but somehow the music is tighter and smoother, with fewer rough patches.

Her music is the most astounding part, splattering styles like a musical Jackson Pollock -- reggae, afrobeat, traditional Asian music, house, hip-hop, Bollywood, and funk.
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14 of 18 people found the following review helpful By H. Bowles on 18 Sept. 2007
Format: Audio CD
What can you say about m.i.a? she's so unique and original, it's really refreshing to hear music like that, with real meaning. This album is unlike any other album I own, it almost creates its own genre; not quite hip hop, not quite electronic but somewhere in between. It's a shame she's not as popular and well known as she deserves to be, but then it's like having this artist as your own musical secret, the music might get ruined if she became too mainstream. Skip straight to 'paper planes', a musical masterpiece, you'll love it!
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8 of 11 people found the following review helpful By russell clarke TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 8 Sept. 2007
Format: Audio CD
I've got to learn to be careful with hip young female singers. I lauded Lily Allen's debut with praise but I wouldn't listen to it now for all the milk roll lemon curd butties in the world. Lily , talented though she is has become ,along with Amy Winehouse, hideously overexposed. Thankfully Mia is a different proposition . She brings a searing political perspective but with non of the intravenous tabloid shenanigans. Plus her music is far from radio friendly .
Kala , so named after her mother was recorded at various locations around the world taking in India , Trinidad, Africa, Australia, Japan , Jamaica and America. The album feels like it has been assembled with the same ethos as Angelina Jolies family , cherry picked with constituent parts from all far flung corners of the world. It's not so much multi cultural as pan global and this makes the music exhilarating , kinetic and sometimes inspired ,However it also means it can become messy , discordant and simply tune free. Still if you want easy listening you can always opt for Natasha Bedingfield or Katie Melua.
Kala takes an admirably impertinent stance on rock ,pop and some other stuff as well using Bollywood strings, baile funk , African chanting , Aboriginal rappers along with cheesy keyboards, hyperactive percussion , and found sounds like chickens , choirs, gunfire(yikes)and cash registers ringing . When it works like on the excellent "Paper Plane" which borrows from The Clashes "Straight To Hell" where Mia ditches her rather limited hectoring rapping and sings it's terrific. "Jimmy" featuring glistening strings is the one true pop moment on the album while "20 Dollar" has Mia incorporate elements of The Pixies "Where Is My Mind" over a rubbery synthesiser.
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