Saturday, September 01, 2007
M.I.A. LIVE, FABRIC, LONDON, 31/08/07
It must be exciting for an artist to start off on tour with a critically acclaimed, truly innovative album under their belts and in Kala, Maya Arulpragasam has just that. It’s a world inspired sonic tonic and as she takes to the stage at Fabricshe seems confident and ready to ignite and inspire the young crowd. Garishly attired, and accompanied by an MC who seems to finish off the higher notes for her, they rip straight into Kala opener Bamboo Banga (the one based loosely on Jonathan Richman’s Roadrunner) which builds thrillingly. The Bollywood disco pop of Jimmy follows backed by the video, though it’s the brooding 20 Dollar, based around Blue Monday, which is the true show stopper. 2005’s breakthrough hit Bucky Done Gun precedes guest Afrikan Boy (less a boy than a giant of a man) who joins her for the bouncy funk of Hussel. It becomes rather shambolic for ten minutes as they gather around DJ Sinden deciding what to play next – African Boy pops off for his I-Pod at one point! – and then they ‘do a Missy’ pulling the crowd up to join them for some amateur ass shaking (luckily she brings this to a halt when a bloke who looks like one of Fall Out Boy gets up). It all gets back on track for the encores: a stunning Paper Planes (despite Maya singing out of tune throughout) and old favourite Galang. Inventive party music, delivered with style and a holler. Go see her soon. .