We haven't heard much about M.I.A.'s fourth album Matangi in recent months, but a new video for lead single "Bring the Noize" may mean that the British provocateur is ready to take baby steps back into the spotlight.
The video finds a pink-haired M.I.A. hanging in an underground club whose dancers wear all-white like some avant-garde hipster version of a Diddy Hamptons party. Epileptics should avoid this dizzying, frenetic clip.
Matangi, scheduled for release this fall, has been a long time coming. In April 2012, the singer posted her first new clip from the album with the text "MATANGI2012." Last summer, MIA tweeted that "no one in the industry collected blows in the last 3 years as much as me. [The new album] is a f-ck you to them and a thank you to you," while also noting that Matangi sounded like "Paul Simon on acid."
While Matangi was expected to be released last December, the singer announced in November that the album would be delayed indefinitely. One month later, she told an Australian site, "I thought I'd finished it. I finished it and then I handed the record in, like a couple of months ago," but that her label found the work to be "too positive."
"It's like 'We just built you up as the public enemy No. 1 and now you're coming out with all this positive stuff.'" Positivity be damned. We want angry, combative M.I.A.
Asked about the inspiration behind the title, the singer noted: "When I went to India, I was looking on Google for stuff that was the color of a certain green, and that's when this green goddess, Matangi, popped up," she said. "I was like, that's weird, the whole time I've been alive on this planet, my mom never mentioned where my name came from. Matangi was the goddess of knowledge and the arts—music, art, dancing, spoken word. When they invented this mythology 4,000 years ago, the concept of someone being about all those things was normal."
While we impatiently wait, we'll be over here bumpin that Matangi Mix if you need us.