Another month, another roundup of the hottest new hip hop clips that have dropped over the past four weeks. Here are our picks for the April edition:
Nav, Travis Scott and Gunna are ready to take over the world with “Turks,” thanks to the help of an all-female army. The rappers prepare for battle in the action-packed video, training their gun-wielding regiment in the ways of war. Once ready, they ride across the desert and take over an unwitting village in order to secure a rare bottle of champagne and a box of gold bars.
If you’ve ever wondered how G-Eazy would look like with a ’stache, then don’t look away (or maybe do just that). Young Gerald revisits the ’70s with his crew—Tory Lanez and Tyga—in this Once Upon a Time in Hollywood-inspired visual, in which the trio host a lavish party at the Vixen Villa. There’s tons of ass-clapping action going on, so watch it at your own discretion.
Trippie Redd and Young Thug warn viewers about the dangers of drug use with their animated clip for “Yell Oh,” which opens with disclaimer that it “highlights[s] the negative consequences associated with fetishizing drug addictions.”
In the claymation clip, the duo get high in a club and go on a wild road trip through a bizarre alien world. They encounter monstrous store clerks, raid a diamond mine and accidentally blow up a city while escaping from the police.
According to creative director Jason Joyride, Rico Nasty originally had an entirely different vision for her “Popstar” visual: They had planned a wild and over-the-top shoot, but COVID-19 forced them back to the drawing board. So they settled for something less crazy, though still deranged and abstract by Rico’s standards. With some green screen magic, the pop art-inspired clip brings to life over 200 of the rapper’s personal doodles.
Earlier this month, UK rap stalwarts The Streets announced their return with “Call My Phone Thinking I’m Doing Nothing Better.” The collaboration with Tame Impala received a visual treatment that captures the weird mix of connectivity and isolation as the world practices social distancing amid a pandemic.
The clip’s concept is simple: Streets leader Mike Skinner rings up all the collaborators on their upcoming mixtape, who answer from wherever they are across the world. The weird and disquieting part is that no one says a single word onscreen—not to mention the fact that Skinner’s still using a blocky, Nokia-esque cellphone.
Things get complicated in the video for “Who Needs Love” when Tory Lanez gets caught in a messy love triangle. The rapper stars as a drug kingpin who gets into a secret relationship with a gorgeous police officer. However, it later turns out that she’s having an affair with her skeezy colleague, which drives Lanez to take deadly revenge. Who needs love, anyway?
Trust DaBaby to address the pandemic in a music video—after all, he did pose in a face mask in the cover of his latest project, Blame it on Baby. If the clip for single “Jump” is true to life, the North Carolina rapper is isolating in a beautiful house with collaborator YoungBoy Never Broke Again and all his friends, whom he’s put to work disinfecting the place.
Everything comes to life when Missy Elliott is around—quite literally, in the case of her new video for “Cool Off.” The visual opens on the rapper as a bronze statue in a museum, but as she starts to perform, the other statues around her spring to life. It then transforms into an eye-popping dance party, with pop art backgrounds and more of Elliott’s iconic tracksuits. Teyana Taylor makes a cameo at the end as a museum guide who rightly describes Elliott as “the greatest, most timeless woman of all time.”
Even on first watch, it’s obvious that A$AP Ferg’s video for his latest single “Value” was constrained by the pandemic and its social distancing measures. But that still didn’t prevent the rapper and video director Hidji from putting out a clip that matches the song’s chest-slapping energy. Footage of empty streets and supermarket shelves, scenes of Ferg at home with a partner, old photos and more all combine, transitions papered over with urgent zooms and head-spinning effects.
For the video of their single “Ooh La La,” Run the Jewels imagine a world where “the battle between humanity and the forces of greed and division” has come to an end. To celebrate mankind’s achievement, the rap duo take to the streets where they join hundreds of others for a massive block party. They dance, burn piles of cash and pop bottles of bubbly, toasting to a new beginning. Greg Nice, DJ Premier and Rage Against the Machine’s Zack de la Rocha also appear in the visual.
Check out previous hip hop MV roundups.