This hyper-sardonic, rhythmic track by our favorite British-Sri Lankan artist, M.I.A., is extremely timely. The track name “OLA-Foreign Friend,” teamed with the content regarding border patrol injustice and the theme song for the Lion King sampled for the track illustrate how society uses cultural stereotypes for their entertainment, while simultaneously denying those cultures of their human rights. The artistic choices made for the track point to the very contentious and horrifying fact that all of the extremely distinct cultural groups referenced are simply grouped into an one-dimensional “other.”
“OLA/Foreign Friend” is the latest release from M.I.A.’s forthcoming album Matahdatah, for which the release date is unknown. These politically-charged bangers from M.I.A.’s latest project remind us that much hasn’t really changed in the world since she released her groundbreaking debut album Arular in which she discusses similar issues. Listen below.