The thrilling debut album from this intense New York City trio makes their city feel alive once again
MIA: Galang 2005
Welcome re-release for Maya's masterpiece of martial ethno-disco
‘Galang’ is 100 per cent ersatz: Sri Lanka imagined from a Shoreditch loft, Jamaican riddim conjured up from a GameBoy memory card. Don’t be fooled by the sweetness of Maya’s singalong patois, though. ‘Galang’ secretes a martial edge under its seductive exterior; this is a song that advances on you, knife between clenched teeth.
It’s worth a gander at the B-sides too. First up, Dave Kelly – dancehall’s answer to The Neptunes, it says here – not so much reworks as remakes the original, twisting in curls of Indian strings and adding verses from Kingston DJ Baby Cham. And weirder still is a mix by System Of A Down’s Serj Tankian: a web of whining sitars that, naturally, gives way to a bludgeoning rock chorus. Effortlessly brilliant stuff.
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