Kala

User Score
8.5

Universal acclaim- based on 285 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 23 out of 285

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  1. Oct 2, 2011
    10
    Epical! It's just the adjective I can use to explain the mixing of references and beats that one of the most reminding singer ever done. Maya Aralprugasam a.k.a. M.I.A. returned after her acclaimed start "Arular" with more power (like she herself says in "Bamboo Banga", one the greatest songs of this album). When the urban culture got down with the African beat, it turned into a CD thatEpical! It's just the adjective I can use to explain the mixing of references and beats that one of the most reminding singer ever done. Maya Aralprugasam a.k.a. M.I.A. returned after her acclaimed start "Arular" with more power (like she herself says in "Bamboo Banga", one the greatest songs of this album). When the urban culture got down with the African beat, it turned into a CD that contains pearls like "Paper Planes", "XR2", "Jimmy" e "World Town". The great difference for the first CD is that this one bring the power of the streets, and not just the powerbeat from Africa. This mixing is the special thing, the X-Factor, that makes this, one the shinny albums ever. Expand
  2. DizzY.
    Aug 27, 2007
    9
    Vibe listen carefully, open your mind. MIA is great.
  3. BillyB
    Aug 30, 2007
    2
    Posh girl from a theatre school tries rapping, claims dad was a tamil tiger freedom fighter for a bit of respect...there is some creativity here but you're listening to a fairly posh londoner not someone particularly cool, bucky gun dun was an OK tune off the last album Arular but all in all fairly weak and not a hugely original artist imo...if she continues to sell not too many Posh girl from a theatre school tries rapping, claims dad was a tamil tiger freedom fighter for a bit of respect...there is some creativity here but you're listening to a fairly posh londoner not someone particularly cool, bucky gun dun was an OK tune off the last album Arular but all in all fairly weak and not a hugely original artist imo...if she continues to sell not too many records she'll stay cool, if she does sell records the cred will go in a second - that type of artist....anyone who releases an LP entitled piracy funds terrorism is a record company gimp...a collab with Will Smith would seem to make sense...don't download - buy the record. Expand
  4. MikeL
    Oct 6, 2007
    3
    Don't feel it. Don't like her voice, the beats annoy me. Not something I could listen to in any situation. I like Justice, Battles, !!!(chk chk chk), and this just does not work for me. I really tried to like it, but I can't.
  5. ByronG.
    Aug 30, 2007
    1
    I cannot believe that people actually consider this to be music. It brought to mind the children's tale "The Emperor's New Clothes."
  6. SparkD
    Sep 4, 2007
    2
    We hate UK rappers !
  7. JoeyK.
    Feb 14, 2008
    0
    The most OVER hyped, OVER rated album of the year. Combining obnoxious terribly off key vocals and contrived over thought out beats that are all painfully sporadic. The worst album of the year by far.
  8. ErikH
    Aug 21, 2007
    3
    "Kala" wants to be a politically-charged hip-hop album with heavy dance influences. It ends up being a mostly forgettable album with a few highlights ("Mango Pickle Down" as a hip-hop song and "XR2" as a dance track). The Streets proved with "Original Pirate Material" that an incredibly unorthodox hip-hop delivery combined with a dance influence could produce surprisingly great results. "Kala" wants to be a politically-charged hip-hop album with heavy dance influences. It ends up being a mostly forgettable album with a few highlights ("Mango Pickle Down" as a hip-hop song and "XR2" as a dance track). The Streets proved with "Original Pirate Material" that an incredibly unorthodox hip-hop delivery combined with a dance influence could produce surprisingly great results. Perhaps it's because Mike Skinner knew his limitations and rather than trying to ignore them, played to them to create a sound that was all his own and kept things relatively simple and effective. M.I.A. only knows how to set everything to kill and because of going too-far too often, this album is a convoluted mess. I really don't understand how her music deserves the merits it receives. She's the Joanna Newsom of hip-hop. Expand
  9. 1fastdog
    Aug 30, 2007
    5
    The most over-rated and over-hyped record since that crappy Joanna Newsome album from last year. Sorry folks, but this is a mediocre album at best. For all the high praise given to this album's beats and sonic experimentalism, it's a strangely flat album and is sadly bereft of both energy and hooks. Bamboo Banga makes for a disappointing 1st track; it's crying out for some The most over-rated and over-hyped record since that crappy Joanna Newsome album from last year. Sorry folks, but this is a mediocre album at best. For all the high praise given to this album's beats and sonic experimentalism, it's a strangely flat album and is sadly bereft of both energy and hooks. Bamboo Banga makes for a disappointing 1st track; it's crying out for some fire, but, sadly, never gets any, relying instead on an ultra-repetitive beat that is almost dead on arrival - the lyrics match the beat: ultra-repetitive and ultimately boring. The rest of the album veers from the horrible (Hussel, Mango Pickle Down River), to the very interesting (Jimmy), to the brilliant (Paper Planes). In short, it's a scattershot listening experience in which a few really bad songs are counterbalanced by a few really good ones with everything else strongly in the "meh" category - hence the 5 rating. A good album for the hard core fans, but a Caveat emptor for everyone else... Expand
  10. ProjectGSX
    Feb 27, 2008
    3
    Just terrible. I tracked down this album after seeing its glowing reviews and I have no clue what the fuss is about.
  11. JohnA.
    Jan 5, 2009
    7
    Gorgeous.
  12. JakeM
    Oct 25, 2007
    9
    Amazing album! Possibly one of the best of the year. It's so good to hear something original these days. I highly recommend this album! Best songs are Paper Planes, 20 Dollar and Jimmy
  13. FernandoV.
    Dec 4, 2007
    10
    This album is dangerous to my health. My neck and shoulders are eternally sore from popping, locking, and nodding.
  14. matta.
    Aug 18, 2007
    9
    I knew there would be at least one douche bag critic who would ruin the score for this album. Just as good as Arular but it isn`t a debut and so it won`t get nearly as much love as it should. A few just okay moments (first single Boyz is the worst song on the album), but so many classics, especially $20, Paper Planes, Jimmy, XR2, etc.
  15. MarkusS
    Aug 21, 2007
    10
    No words can express how great this record is. Album of the year this far. Not listening to this album means not listening to the new kind auf "worldmusic"
  16. IanC.
    Aug 20, 2007
    10
    Even though it's certainly rough around the edges, if Kala is anything it's momentous, but its reviews don't reflect that. How is it that the mode score seems to be 80? I don't want to accuse a critic of copping out because he is afraid of not understanding an album that everyone else glowingly reviews, but if you've ever written about music, you know it's a Even though it's certainly rough around the edges, if Kala is anything it's momentous, but its reviews don't reflect that. How is it that the mode score seems to be 80? I don't want to accuse a critic of copping out because he is afraid of not understanding an album that everyone else glowingly reviews, but if you've ever written about music, you know it's a temptation. From my point of view, this album could be nothing if not ~10 or ~0. Expand
  17. michaelt
    Aug 24, 2007
    10
    Pivotal
  18. RealistJoe
    Sep 4, 2007
    8
    Good on M.I.A. for coming out with an interesting second record. Her production on this album is stellar, and given her limited resources, and aesthetic for wanting things done cheaply, it comes off great. Props to her for great diversity in her production, outlook and musical/artistic taste.
  19. TalesR.
    Sep 4, 2007
    10
    I really recommend this album, is an experience.
  20. Kumuthanx
    Jun 11, 2008
    10
    MIA is excellent! talented. a genius. her music is like abstract art. only some of you will "get it".
  21. PaulaK.
    Jul 4, 2008
    10
    Crazy.Cool.Hot.Nice..
  22. mark
    Aug 19, 2007
    10
    "Arular" was one hell of a masterpiece, so my expectations for this album were insanely high. I was not disappointed. "Kala" is just as great, if not better. M.I.A. truly is one of the best, most original artists of our time.
  23. [Anonymous]
    Aug 20, 2007
    9
    A completely worthy follow-up to Arular. M.I.A. still blends every style you could think of (even disco - see "Jimmy") and makes it work. It's interesting, catchy, and with the political overtones that M.I.A. is known for. It's more feminine, there's quite a bit more singing than there was on Arular, but don't expect anything conventional popstars would even dream of. A completely worthy follow-up to Arular. M.I.A. still blends every style you could think of (even disco - see "Jimmy") and makes it work. It's interesting, catchy, and with the political overtones that M.I.A. is known for. It's more feminine, there's quite a bit more singing than there was on Arular, but don't expect anything conventional popstars would even dream of. ("Boyz" is probably the closest you'd get.) Expand
  24. DavidG.
    Aug 26, 2007
    10
    Pop/Rap brilliance encapsulated in a surprisingly, refreshingly digestible smörgåsbord of world music.
  25. McLovin
    Aug 27, 2007
    2
    Quite possibly the most over-hyped crap of the decade. This isn't genius. A least a couple publications aren't scared to lose critic-street-cred by calling it what it is. What a waste of time. Sad that folks think this is meaningful stuff.
  26. MattD.
    Aug 28, 2007
    1
    A nearly unlistenable mix of chanting and shrill music.
  27. MattJ
    Aug 20, 2007
    9
    Uses the variation of beats and eclectic sounds of the first but expands that sound. Now featuring more brazil based samba sounds to classical violins. There's also more variation in tone and rythm with slower songs on a par with some of the more upbeat ones. Great fresh new album
  28. JamesM
    Sep 1, 2007
    8
    A refreshing album. Alive with the global noise of life. I love the Aussie kids on track 6.
  29. GinnaQ
    Sep 10, 2007
    9
    Asides from the last track, this is one of the best albums of 2007.
  30. IyotirmayaD.
    Sep 10, 2007
    9
    I can't stop playing it.
Metascore
87

Universal acclaim - based on 37 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 35 out of 37
  2. Negative: 1 out of 37
  1. Although there are a couple of failed tracks--like the tediously slow 'The Turn'--most of this stuff is groundbreaking.
  2. There are the terrible lyrics and more than a few moments where her one-style-fits-all MCing grates, but there's also the politics that no one else would touch, an intelligence, colour and humour, and the added benefit of centrifugally heavy production. Skip a couple, and you're in for a treat.
  3. Q Magazine
    80
    Everything here is a fantastic hybrid, M.I.A. and her platoon of producers thieving fashionable street sounds from Baltimore hip hop to Brazil's baile funk. [Sep 2007, p.89]