A track from M.I.A.’s upcoming June release surfaced online today, the punk-leaning “Born Free.” We’re not quite sure what to make of the disjointed track, although any criticisms we have of it would pale next to the complaints M.I.A. has reserved for her musical peers (and pretty much everything else). Listen to “Born Free” below.[wpaudio url="http://idolator.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/04/Born-Free.mp3" text="M.I.A. - Born Free" dl="0"]
This is definitely a new direction for the artist—with the heavy, ecstatic drums and the slightly off-pitch speak-singing vocals, it sounds like a straight-up punk song with just a dab of electronica. Whereas we could gladly bob our heads to the much more palatable “There’s Space For Ol Dat I See” (a slow, groovy electro-tinged track that surfaced last January), the raucous “Born Free” (co-written by with Suicide’s Alan Vega and Martin Rev) comes off unpolished.
But this is hardly a “new” song—here she is performing the track at Cali music fest Street Scene in 2009, and it’s no more easy on the ears than the studio recorded version:
Maybe it’s too soon to call, but we have a slight suspicion this new musical direction is going to leave us disappointed, much like how we felt after listening to MGMT’s single-lacking Congratulations. (But we’ll reserve all judgement on M.I.A.’s album til we hear more tracks and see a hopefully cat-less cover art.)