Suddenly, the Cities are alive.
Spring is the season of possibility, and you can feel that in the way that the equinox has awakened Minnesotans. Suddenly, it’s 45 degrees and sunny, and people are wearing shorts to the office. Gotta love the audacity of a recently un-hibernated Minnesotan.
The difficulty here is sustaining. How do you keep the hope of spring alive through the summer, fall, and goddamingly enough, winter? It starts with the intention to endure. Local artists, as you gallop off into the sunny, soggy world, remember to store some of that energy for when you need it most. Don’t let this May be where your momentum ends.
Cashinova ft. PROF – “Skyscrapers”
Stophouse superstars align on the new video for Cashinova’s “Skyscrapers.” The second single from the forthcoming Big Dragon LP after “Caught the Wave,” “Skyscrapers” shows how Cashinova stands alongside PROF, as the Cambodian-born rapper puts in a mesmerizing performance that easily measures up to the standard of the party-loving Stophouse capo. Like “Caught the Wave,” “Skyscrapers” is directed by Thomas Aksamit, and like everything that comes out of Stophouse, it’s a no-apologies good time.
Will Robinson – “Lucy Shift”
Two months ago, I picked Will Robinson as one of the local acts poised to have a big year in 2019, and the acid rapper is back to show doubters he deserved the nod. “Lucy Shift” is only a brief interlude on Robinson’s 2018 EP Lost in Space Pt. 2, but its power is stunning when set to film by Robert Henry. Robinson appears in the video as a possessed maniac, rapping like a psilocybin-addled hybrid of Criss Angel and Danny Brown.
QT? – “Test of Time/Catch & Release”
Like Will Robinson, Minneapolis rapper QT? isn’t afraid to release a video for a quick song, but his latest single is actually a twofer that pairs the short-run “Test of Time” with the longer “Catch & Release.” The release is similar to the A side/B side singles of yore, and packaging the two together gives you a great sense of what QT?’s got cooking. Christian Spraungel and Alex Munro direct the two-part video, shifting from a psychedelic trip back into the reality of QT?’s messy everyday. Bonus points to QT? for the issue of City Pages draped over the arm of his couch.
Prince Riley – “Sirens”
Police sirens mean trouble. For North Side rapper Prince Riley, they carry the concern that another person he knows has been gunned down. His new video for “Sirens” follows a day in Riley’s life as he tries to keep his head up despite the rising murder rate and the near-impossibility of getting famous through rapping. Despite the dire circumstances, “Sirens” demonstrates no defeat. Instead, Riley perseveres in a big, gleaming anthem for people undergoing the same struggle. The video is by Dogfood Media.
Lewiee Blaze– “Black Lives Matter”
It’s hard to believe it’s been two and a half years since police murdered Philando Castile. It’s even harder to believe that it’s been over seven years since Trayvon Martin suffered the same fate. High School for the Recording Arts grad Lewiee Blaze is still processing those events and the countless other slayings that have happened in the years since, as displayed in his powerful new spoken-word poem “Black Lives Matter.” The opening salvo from his long-awaited debut Young Black and Gifted, “Black Lives Matter” begins on a somber note before ultimately raising a fist in solidarity. Matt Wales Media directs the video, which was shot at the HSRA and the Minnesota State Capitol.
Dream of seeing your video appear in Local Frames? Email writer Jerard Fagerberg at [email protected]