Though M.I.A.'s fourth studio album, Matangi, won't hit shelves until November 5th, the rapper has posted individual streams of all 15 tracks on her VEVO account.
Branching from the gritty, electronic hip-hop of "Bring the Noize" to the seductive R&B-pop of "Sexodus" (which features a guest spot from Canadian producer-crooner The Weeknd) to the self-empowerment sing-along "Come Walk With Me," the album has a distinct, eclectic range. M.I.A. handled much of the album's production herself, though she also worked with several notable producers, including Danja, Hit-Boy and longtime collaborator Switch.
In a new interview with Billboard, M.I.A. talks about her sonic reinvention on Matangi, which is named after (and inspired by) a Hindu goddess of inner knowledge.
"Suddenly it was like, 'OK, I'm going to make this album for Matangi,'" she says, noting that her previous approach to music had become "saturated and predictable." She adds, "It's making music without treating it as a business or as a game or as a competition."
The road to Matangi has been a long one. The album was originally due to be released in April but suffered multiple delays, prompting the rapper to badmouth her label, Interscope, on Twitter. Meanwhile, an album documentary was surrounded by creative struggle: director Steve Loveridge quit the project in July after M.I.A.'s label removed a teaser he posted online.