Arular - M.I.A.

Universal acclaim - based on 33 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 32 out of 33
  2. Negative: 0 out of 33
  1. 100
    Will likely be the best political album this year. [Mar 2005, p.88]
  2. It’s a swaggering, spitting, utterly contemporary album of politically dissident, sexually forthright Anglo-Sri Lankan dubstep bhangra hip-pop IDM in which M.I.A. stars as protagonist, antagonist, chanteuse, MC, exotic schoolgirl tease, graphic artist, chastiser of the immoral, and fun-loving London-living party girl. And all in under 40 minutes, too. It’s special. We’ve not heard it’s like before.
  3. This is probably as close as anyone has yet come to achieving the visions of revolutionary global pop once advanced by the Clash and Afrika Bambaataa; it's equally enlightening to urban street kids and university eggheads.
  4. As instantly infectious as it is hard to pin down. [15 Apr 2005, p.85]
  5. It's an accessible album, but one containing challenging contrasts. In the end, what's most impressive is how Arulpragasam powerfully weaves a consistent theme of rootlessness throughout the record, drawing on her experiences in both the third world and modern London, from civil war to Western urban culture, and her own, highly unique, bastardized form of pop music is the extraordinary end result.
  6. Weird, playful, unclassifiable, sexy, brilliantly addictive.
  7. The only problem with this album is the difficulty you're going to have explaining what the hell it sounds like to your friends after they hear you raving about it.
  8. 90
    M.I.A.'s vivid debut already sounds like a booty-shaking milestone to rank alongside The Streets and Dizzee Rascal. [May 2005, p.98]
  9. “Arular”, as well as being a particularly great and brave album, could well be this year’s Portishead or Massive Attack.
  10. It's the best kind of pop album imaginable. It can be enjoyed on a purely physical level, and it also carries the potential to adjust your worldview.
  11. Fortifying her monstrous singles "Galang" and "Sunshowers" with further molten munitions, Arular is primed for worldwide insurrection.
  12. With all the column inches and message board posts arguing about whether M.I.A. is an opportunist or a clever contextualist, genuine or a fraud, full of good intentions or no specific intentions at all, the closest thing to a truism about Arular is that it's a taut, invigorating distillation of the world's most thrilling music; a celebration of contradictions and aural globalization that recasts the tag "world music" as the ultimate in communicative pop rather than a symbol of condescending piety.
  13. Arular beats out most everything I’ve heard this year in terms of creativity, energy, dance-ability and fun.
User Score

Universal acclaim- based on 264 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 24 out of 143
  1. JM
    Jul 7, 2005
    One of the essential albums of the year...
  2. Anonymous
    Sep 4, 2007
    Can anyone even understand what she is saying? I am shocked to see that so many people like this kind of music. And I use the term music Can anyone even understand what she is saying? I am shocked to see that so many people like this kind of music. And I use the term music lightly, because to me this is just random noises thrown together. If anyone listens to Dane Cook, then they will understand when I say that this is the kind of noise that makes you want to punch a baby. Full Review »
  3. ivanv
    Jan 4, 2007
    awful, how is this getting good reviews. this sounds even worse than kevin federline. i know there a message and all but its awful. not music