M.I.A. threatens to leak 'stolen' album in label spat

M.I.A. has hinted at trouble surrounding the release of her latest album.
M.I.A. has hinted at trouble surrounding the release of her latest album.

The rapper M.I.A. said she was ready to leak her new album, which will delve into refugee rights, saying other artists were taking her ideas.

The British-Sri Lankan hip-hop innovator announced the album almost exactly a year ago and followed up with videos but has suggested that her record label is throwing roadblocks.

"I hate it when big American artists take from me and my work and refugee sentiments from my work before it's released - survivor !!!" she tweeted without specifying names.

M.I.A., releasing her track Swords in July 2015, said that the upcoming album - her first since 2013 - would have a concept "broader than a border".

Swords is full of Hindu imagery including scenes from a temple and also features a fast-paced dancer in a tutu from Ivory Coast, whom M.I.A. said she discovered on YouTube and tracked down.

Another track from the upcoming album, Borders, directly tackles Europe's refugee crisis with imagery of migrants climbing fences and packed into boats.

The Paris Saint Germain soccer team filed a lawsuit against her as she appeared in the video wearing a T-shirt of the club with the slogan "Fly Emirates," a reference to sponsor airline Emirates, changed to "Fly Pirates".

The drama surrounding the upcoming album is not new for M.I.A. The release of her 2005 debut album, Arular, was repeatedly delayed due to apparent legal issues on rights to the samples.

The album won widespread critical acclaim as M.I.A. was credited with bringing a punk edge, reggaeton beat and activism from the developing world into dance music.

The London-born daughter of Tamil Tiger rebels, the artist whose real name is Mathangi Arulpragasam is also a fashion designer and photographer.


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