M.I.A.

Unable to get into her night-time showcase, which had line-ups four hours before her set time, I weaselled into a private party where Maya Arulpragasm delivered a dynamite set that withstood a few train wrecks from her DJ/boyfriend Diplo and got the industry crowd dancing and singing along to an album that hadn't even been released yet. Though "Amazon” came off strongest, M.I.A. didn't have a single weak song in her repertoire and her fast-improving live skills, widely (and unfairly) dissed at a Toronto gig the month before, made clear that her hype is to be believed.