On Thursday, US rap collective Brockhampton dropped an impromptu video in Sydney for their single “New Orleans”, the opening track taken from their new album Iridescence. It was shot after the exclusive screening of their documentary The Longest Summer in America at the George Street Event Cinemas in the city, ahead of their performance today at Listen Out. The rappers are performing live in the middle of a raging audience, who dance and sing along to the catchy hook of the new track:
“Tell ’em boys, don’t run from us/ I been down too long, cousin/ I been down too long, brother/ Tell the world I ain’t scared of nothing/ Tell the world I ain’t scared of jumping”
The shaky camera work, the jumping crowd and the rappers live performance make it seem as if you were in the middle of the crowd with them. “New Orleans” makes Brockhampton feel like they are part of the audience and not a band, which has signed a multi-million dollar contract this year.
Watch the video, which was released mere hours after it was filmed, to the single “New Orleans” here:
Brockhampton is a Hip Hop outfit with as many as fourteen members, based in Los Angeles, California. Kevin Abstract, the lead rapper and producer of their videos, founded the band by posting “anyone wanna make a band” in an online forum. In 2017 the DIY group released their first trilogy of albums called Saturation, which has gained recognition and critical acclaim throughout the world. The collaboration of unique voices and creative minds make for equally divers sounding tracks.
Early 2018, after sexual misconduct allegations against one of the members Ameer Vann, and a seemingly unheard of multi-million dollar contract with record label RCA, they announced their second trilogy, The Best Years of Our Lives.
Just a week ago they released the first of these three albums, Iridescence, which was recorded at Abbey Road Studios in London in just ten days. The literal meaning of the word is “a lustrous rainbow-like play of colours, that tends to change with the angle of view”, also a description of the outfit’s versatile work. Brockhampton’s latest album contains a reinforced sense of unity, especially after overcoming the genuine feelings of betrayal, by their former band member Vann, as a team.
The honest lyrics on the record show the collective’s feelings split bare and make them one of the genre’s progressive and boldest contemporary faces. Contrary to earlier records Iridescence contains a pensive, more grown up sound than previous cheeky and ebullient tracks. Brockhampton seem to truly have found their voice and place in the music industry.
The documentary The Longest Summer in America is a detailed insight into the band producing the record in the shadow of Ameer Vann’s departure. Directed by front man Kevin Abstract, the movie is partly filmed with the giddy carefree energy of a home video and paired with more serious takes of several band members pouring out their hearts and minds into the Abbey Road microphones. It is less a movie for cinefiles, than it is one for the million-strong fan base of the band.
Brockhampton are currently on a sold out tour in Australia and will be kicking off their United States tour shortly. You can see all the dates on their official website.
Iridescence, which features “New Orleans”, is out now.