In the Blog

paper planes and hoodie pride

September 23rd, 2007     by Anna Leventhal     Comments

I apologize for my lack of music posts lately - it’s not that there’s not enough good music out there right now but rather that there’s too much! How’s a girl to make up her mind?

I also realize that I made it my mandate - ahem, ladydate - to introduce music that you may not have heard before, and I’ve noted that many folks here are no stranger to the wonder that is MIA. But every time I try to think about what music I’m most excited about right now, my mind keeps sliding back to Paper Planes, a track off of her new album Kala.

By now it’s all too clichee to describe music as “a revolution you can dance to” (hello, Le Tigre’s been doing it since the nineties) so I’ll assume you all know what I mean, and move on to how amazing it is to hear a dance song dealing with issues of colonialism, border patrolling, and “Third World democracy”. Especially compelling is the tension in the song, between the aggression of the gunshots and the playful, hopscotch rhythm that incorporates them. It’s like “I’m dancing to the sounds of warfare, and I love it! Is this right? Oh well, pass the glowsticks…” Listen to the song, you’ll know what I mean. And, while I don’t want to suggest it’s not a bumpin’ dancehall future-classic (because no doubt it is), it’s also, well, kind of sad. As songs about war and containment of bodies often are.

As a follow-up to what’s sure to be the season’s most-spun album, may I suggest the track Love Me or Hate Me by Lady Sovereign, the self-described “biggest midget in the game”? (Note: Her album Public Warning also has a very catchy track called Hoodie, which is apparently Lady Sovereign’s response to England’s attempt to ban hooded sweatshirts in nightclubs. A worthier cause I couldn’t imagine.) If only more pop stars could adopt the Lady’s “take it or leave it, I couldn’t give a flying rat’s patootie” attitude - except “flying rat’s patootie” probably wouldn’t be her phrase of choice (yes, this track has swear words, and I’m not talking about “douchebag”. If you’re going to play this one for your grandma or baby sister, consider yourself warned). She’s a funky little monkey with the tiniest ears, she don’t like drinking fancy champy, she’ll stick to Heinekin beers (yes, these are her own words. I can’t invent stuff like that). A girl after my own heart.

Happy listening.

Tags: picks from planet venus, playlist

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