It’s the latest taste of M.I.A.’s fifth studio album, following the Diplo–produced “Bird Song” and “Go Off,” a collaboration with DJ Blaqstarr and Skrillex. Perhaps unsurprisingly with the former One Direction member onboard, “Freedun” leans towards pop with M.I.A.’s croons gliding throughout melodic yet drum-heavy beat.
In an interview with BBC Radio’s Annie Mac, M.I.A. noted that snagging the former boy band star for her new single “just kind of happened.” She said, “It sort of takes me out my comfort zone but kind of takes him out of his a little bit as well. It just worked out.”
“Freedun” shows the Sri Lankan musician’s versatility, while hints of the more raw “Paper Planes” M.I.A. pop up towards the end of the song. Meanwhile, Malik’s vocals offer a smooth, relaxed tone to the hard-hitting backbeat while M.I.A. chants “Free-du-du-dun” until the song ends.
Listen to the interview and “Freedun” below.