I know what you're saying: M.I.A. is neither rock nor a single girl, what's going on!? It's true that she is neither rock nor a single girl, but M.I.A. is a luminary, and one of very few women in mainstream music that one might consider looking up to. A refugee and descendant of a wanted political dissident, M.I.A. writes songs about her experience with the complex and unequal relationship between 'First' and 'Third' World nations. She is not just some vacuous pop star. Kanye West has pronounced her the 'future' of music, and while I am loathe to admit this, I agree with him.
And besides, luminary or not, hip hop, punk, post-hardcore: they all come from the same place, if you think about it. They're kind of cousins, in a way. Far be it for me to exclude any family members based on genre distinctions. No matter how she might characterize her music, I feel like M.I.A. epitomizes punk. Seriously, is there anything more punk rock than taking on stereotypes about immigrants in a hip hop song that uses a sample from The Clash?
So fight off those Wednesday blues and The Man with a little bit of the unlikely, but loveable "Paper Planes"!