M.I.A. Releases Video That Sure Seems Like the One That Had Her Accused of ‘Cultural Appropriation’

Back in May, it seemed professional cultural agitator M.I.A. got into a bit of hot water with her label when she tried to release a new video. She tweeted that the video, which was filmed in the Ivory Coast, was being blocked over accusations of “cultural appropriation.” It appears M.I.A. has finally been able to release that same video, in the form of a short film called “Matahdatah Scroll 01 Broader Than a Border,” which premiered on Apple Music. It’s a two-part video beginning with elaborate and beautifully filmed choreography involving young female sword-fighters in India, set to a new song aptly titled “Swords,” off her just-announced upcoming album Matahdatah. It then transitions to “Warriors,” a song from 2013’s Matangi, where we see M.I.A. travel to the Ivory Coast. She sits on a throne among a large crowd to enjoy a performance by a male dancer with remarkably quick feet (who’s also likely the dancer she referenced in her tweets). Vulture has reached out to M.I.A.’s label Interscope for confirmation and will update if we hear back.

M.I.A. Debuts New Short Film on Apple Music