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Review: ‘Master of My Make-Believe’ strikes gold

Returning to the scene after a four-year absence, Santigold, whose real name is Santi White, proves her staying power with sophomore album, “Master of My Make-Believe.”

The album, staying true to the style of her debut, self-titled “Santogold,” gives listeners exactly what they’d expect in a second album. Already defined and well-received, Santigold discarded any existing inhibitions with her latest project.

Kicking off the album, Santigold collaborates with hipster queen Karen O, lead singer of the Yeah Yeah Yeahs, in “GO!” The track, fused with electro-jungle beats and catchy as the common cold, blends the styles of the two artists. They sing, “People want my power,” setting the rebel-revolution tone that pulses throughout the album.

Though never garnering top 40 attention with her previous works, a hit single could easily be on the horizon for Santigold with “GO!” Combined with Karen O’s critical and popular acclaim, the song’s in-your-face beat is sure to gain the singer some attention.

In “The Keepers,” Santigold sings, “We’re the keepers / While we sleep in America our house is burning down.” Such lyrics, paired with similar culture critic, give audiences more than just a party rhythm. Never shying from her outrageous, fantasy-driven image, Santigold shares her world views.

Though the comparisons to fellow techno-rapper M.I.A., who broke into the 2007 music scene with “Paper Planes,” are inevitable, Santigold’s album is anything but carbon copy. Yes, the artists’ styles are similar, but Santigold brings fresh and new material to “Master of My Make-Believe,” never relying on imitation.

Although critics are hard to come by for an unseasoned listener, the album does slightly drag through the middle. Songs such as the slow-jam “This Isn’t Our Parade” and the almost too-current, pop-influenced “Look at These Hoes” take away from the album’s overall quality, swaying from the rare elements that drive the other tracks.

Filled with party attitude, “Master of My Make-Believe” is likely to be heard blasting from the porches of TOMS-wearing hipsters this summer. The album deserves a listen from all audiences, though suiting up in glitter and dancing under a black light in true Santigold fashion is entirely up to you.

Grade: A

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