This was a great week for new music videos from artists like DJ Khaled, Pharrell Williams, Rick Ross, Arcade Fire, The Weeknd, and more. Check out everything I rounded up below, along with my reactions.
DJ Khaled – Wild Thoughts
Even though I’m not much of a fan, I’ll give DJ Khaled credit for one thing at least; the man doesn’t slow down or take breaks. Already gearing up for another album, “Wild Thoughts” is the first single I’ve heard to warrant that quick turn around. But it’s really not that hard when you sample an already mega-hit classic like “Maria Maria” by Santana. It’s literally almost a cover, so pretty much a can’t miss. Hey, I’ve never accused him of having actual musical talent.
Wale – Colombia Heights (Te Llamo)
I feel Wale’s pain. He consistently puts out solid music but never gets the acclaim or recognition as his peers. Unfortunately, that seems to be the case yet again with Shine. By all measures a very good album that I hear almost no one talking about. Who knows what it’ll take to change that but this is yet another solid single from the DC rapper. It’s a dope crossover that pays homage to Colombia Heights in DC; and while the neighborhood doesn’t actually make an appearance in the video, you do get some dope kaleidoscope like effects.
No Malice – Fake News
Man, I always think about what Clipse could have been if they had been able to put out more than the two (extremely dope) albums they actually did. But alas, we’ll probably never find out as the older brother has stepped away from the group to make his own brand of music. He gets branded as christian rap now but in truth his music sounds as “real” and raw as ever, but the content is much more aware and insightful. Heavy handed and preachy this is not, and that beat is flames. I think he’s got something here.
Pharrell Williams – There’s Something Special
That Despicable Me money must be really good, or he just really loves the minions (really who doesn’t though). Pharrell is back with the second single in as many weeks and this one’s a much slower ballad that I actually like more than the first. The slow tempo and electronic beats mesh well together. The video is essentially a trailer for the movie with a heavy dose of minions (of course).
Jaden – BATMAN
One thing I don’t hear too often is “man that celebrities kid seems really normal and well adjusted.” I mean just take this video for example. Long gone are the days of The Pursuit of Happyness and Karate Kid cute kid Jaden Smith. Grown up Jaden is full blown weird and this video is eccentric pretty much for the sake of being eccentric. And for as weird as this video is, just keep in mind that he actually wore this suit to Kanye Kardashian’s wedding. With that being said, I actually fuck with a lot of his stuff musically and this song is low key fire. Batman Batman Batman!
Russ – MVP
I’m always glad to see artists who’ve grinded from the bottom finally get the shine and recognition they deserve, and no one’s grinded more than Russ. It’s paying off now as his debut(?) There’s Really A Wolf came out extremely dope and gets regular play from me. The closing track of the project gets it’s own video and he keeps it simple like he normally does with tour bus shenanigans, lots of weed, and hazy, lo-fi visuals.
Rick Ross – Idols Become Rivals
Rather You Than Me was Ross’ best album in some years so it’s no surprise to see him giving it the proper attention it deserves. Half the album has to have a video by now. But my favorite track and the one most talked about finally gets it’s own set of visuals. It’s typical Ross video fare, slow motion, cigars, expensive cars, and religious imagery, but the shots at Birdman just don’t stop coming (deservedly so).
Dave East – What Is The Hold Up
This aptly titled song is actually the first single for Dave East’s follow up to his very dope debut, Kairi Chanel. He showed a lot of promise in that tape and he’s steady been keeping the flame alive with some very dope remixes. Needless to say, I’ve been excited to hear what he’s been cooking up. This is honestly pretty fucking mehhhhh. A sharp turn from the almost throwback NY rap he brought on the first go around, he tries to go full blown trap/wavy/trill (however the fuck you wanna call it) and it does not work. I never once thought while listening to Kairi Chanel, “you know what this needs…auto-tune,” but that’s exactly what he gave us. Ugh. And the video looks like it was shot with a potato. He’s gonna need to come better than this.
Arcade Fire – Creature Comfort
I’ll admit, outside of name, my knowledge of Arcade Fire is absolutely zero. So I don’t know if this is how they normally sound, but I fuck with this, heavy! Those synths are filthy and I’m just loving the whole vibe of the song. The lyrics are raw and probably pretty much on point for a lot of teens and young adults. I love the video’s aesthetics with the strobing lights, shiny suits, neon tickers, and the short viewing area with large black bars is a nice touch. This is just brilliant and I’m gonna have to look out for this album.
The Weeknd – Secrets
While I probably revisit Starboy the least out of any of The Weeknd’s albums, the videos that came out of this project have been fantastic. “Secrets” is yet another surreal set of visuals that packs in a ton of imagery that’ll likely go over most people’s heads (myself included), but I like it’s aesthetics and they mesh well with the song’s infectious 80’s dance vibes.
What’d you think about this week’s videos? Which ones were your favorites? Did I miss any that I should check out? Let me know in the comments below and be sure to subscribe to stay up with all the new content.