When I first bought the album Combat Rock by The Clash, I didn’t like it. Of course I liked “Should I Stay or Should I Go” and “Rock the Casbah” (anyone with the sense of hearing likes those songs). But “Car Jamming”? “Overpowered by Funk”? “Ghetto Defendant”? Not even a cameo by Allen Ginsburg on that last one could save it. You’ll have to understand, in my exploration of The Clash’s music I’d only heard the first three albums The Clash, Give ‘Em Enough Rope and London Calling (skipped over Sandanista!), so I’d only heard REALLY good Clash music. Combat Rock was a bit disappointing to say the least. But after listening to the album for a couple years, I came to a comfortable truce with it, always keeping in mind that I can skip the songs I can’t stand listening to.
It’s kind of the same with MIA. I know that I’m supposed to be in love with her last album Arular. All the other blogs tell me that I should be, and so do the cool kids. But it just never clicked with me. I like some of her stuff (the Arular outtake “U.R.A.Q.T.” for example, which samples the “Sanford and Son” theme), but the rest of it just makes me feel like I’m missing something. From what I’ve heard from the new album Kala, I have a feeling that it’ll be about the same. The first single “Bird Flu” has a great beat but that’s about it, and her voice just comes across as grating. “Paper Planes” on the other hand uses a far more conventional beat, but it’s catchy and I’ve actually enjoyed listening to it multiple times, instead of getting irritated. Oh, and the sample isn’t bad either.
The Clash – Straight to Hell (Buy It) MIA – Paper Planes (Buy It)
posted by Adam