The back and forth between controversial rapper M.I.A. and festival organizers at Afropunk has been a fascinating study on the intersections between politics and art. Now, just after the release of her latest single, Afropunk has officially dropped M.I.A. over controversial comments she made about the #BlackLivesMatter movement.
Late last week, M.I.A. dropped her latest track, "Go Off" (produced by Skrillex and the legendary club mastermind Blaqstarr). The song was quickly hailed as a masterpiece, with Jezebel writer Julianne Escobedo Shepherd describing the accompanying video as "a grotesque sort of beauty: the destruction is palpable, an invasion of the natural order, but it’s also like a moving impressionist painting, slowly bursting into the air in succession, a photogenic tragedy."
This latest track is off M.I.A.'s embattled upcoming LP, recently retitled A.I.M., which the artist has hinted will be her last album.
Shortly after the debut (although perhaps unrelated), Afropunk went back on a previously issued statement that claimed they would be keeping M.I.A. on as a headliner for their upcoming UK festival despite controversial statements she had made about global racial politics. Here's the latest from the festival:
M.I.A. herself hasn't posted anything in response to the latest decision. A.I.M. is set to be released on September 9th.