Local Frames: This week's 5 must-see Minnesota music videos

Allan Kingdom

Allan Kingdom

You don't give love in order to get love. You give love in order to become love.

Those are the oft-unattributed words of Apollo Poetry, and they're something of a cliche by this point. You can get those words hastily screen-printed on a throw pillow for like $10 on Etsy. But the greatest of all cliches is love, so it all makes sense.

In the shadow of Valentine's Day, it's fitting that this edition of Local Frames would be all about love. Local love. Crew love. All that mushy-gushy bullshit that makes us glad to live in the Land of 10,000. 

Allan Kingdom — "Northern Lights"

It takes more than a magazine to spark Allan Kingdom's vibe. Kingdom's impregnable steez has always been the St. Paul MC's calling card, and his Autotune-slurred delivery has earned Kingdom exhausting comparisons to Kanye West. But the "All Day" guest's January mixtape, Northern Lights, showed the public that Kingdom isn't just some prodigal rehash of the Louis Vuitton Don — he's a swagged-out pedagog in his own right.

In the new video for title track "Northern Lights," Kingdom states as much, playing in the technicolor of the aurora borealis while whirring keys prop up his chorus of "This is fun to me / It's a hunt for me." The new video premiered at VIBE this week, proving that not all rising pedagogs get the Ye treatment in their office. Kingdom is heading out on a national tour with Denzel Curry, which kicks off in Scottsdale, Ariziona, on March 23.

Ryan Hipsher — "Fate"

Minneapolis emotionalist Ryan Hipsher's name is one consonant away from being a certain popular slur for City Pages music critics, but there's nothing trendy or disingenuous about the singer-songwriter's latest single. "Fate" is a forlorn, slow-simmering single from the young heartmelter.

As Hipsher travels through the wintry streets of Minnesota, he runs through the complicated emotions of severing a long-term relationship. Between the discomfort of leaving something so familiar and the lingering memories of past deeds, Hipsher seeks clarity, closing on the ominous note of  "And I'll test fate, but I've been told so much that fate is hard to beat."

Also, bigfoot makes a surprise cameo in the background at some point. So it's not all dreary. Love, am I right?

Baydrof — "Mind (Gone)"

St. Paul experimental hip-hop artist Baydrof's love manifests in his hustle. The DIY impresario made the video for "Mind (Gone)" on a $100 budget and under the instruction of several how-to YouTube videos.

Because Baydrof is so bent on creating everything himself, he replaced all the extras with stuffed animals when no one showed up to his shoot, giving his trippy echo of a song a more unsettled feel. Pretty good for a shoestring. The obviously self-produced Dream Chaser EP is out now.

Taylor J — "Proud"

Love is like jazz — improvisational but ultimately rooted in repetition. That's what makes St. Paul MC Taylor J a perfect fit for this amorous entry into Local Frames. J's 1991 mixtape is rich in the textures of jazz, with rambling piano lines and thick standup bass, and his latest single "Proud" lives out that aesthetic, giving the cerebral rapper an elegant setting to go deep.

Taylor J might just be the Twin Cities' version of Talib Kweli. If St. Paul has the need for a rapper laureate, "Proud" is J's candidacy announcement. He lets his city be the backdrop as he demonstrates his wit and insight. That's love, right there.

Will Robinson — "IDK"

Leech Lake's Will Robinson loves lean. That's more or less the take-home message of "IDK," in which the gravelly rapper professes his affection for codeine and Sprite. But it's more than just a hedonistic ode to purple drank — it's a Leary-ian exploration of consciousness and anxiety.

The Peace of Mind Records MC uses lean as a gateway into his own mind and heart, a sordid journey that is captured in the video's celluloid distortions. This kind of love is often destructive, but when it's coupled with an active, curious mind like Robinson's, it becomes more about knowing yourself than distancing yourself from reality. The video comes courtesy of Local Frames all-stars Common Culture.

Dream of seeing your video appear in Local Frames? Email writer Jerard Fagerberg at [email protected].