There are a lot of videos coming out of Austin these days, so we’ve decided to make life easier for you by compiling some of the most notable into a recurring feature called Out of Focus.
Sertified- “Back 2 the Block (ft. Stat 1 and Cap N Kirk)”
Chips &Salsa, the new team up from Sertified and Haris the Terrist, is full of excellent cuts that stand out from the ATX pack, but the highlight of the album and arguably of Sertified’s career so far is “Back 2 the Block,” a raw and heavy hitting number that now has an equally raw video. The track features a classic Haris beat, heavy on the drums and bass and spiced up with exotic samples, bringing out an especially vicious performance from Sertified. The video has Sertified and collaborators Stat 1 and Cap N Kirk doing an Austin version of Mean Streets, ThaReal Chino’s direction making the 512 look grittier than it’s ever looked, though the oversaturated black and white cinematography deserves quite a bit of credit for that. It’s a minimalist clip, but with a track this ferocious, it’s probably best to stand back and not interfere anyway.
Tank Washington- “R.I.P POP”
Tha Real Chino’s directing chops are showcased more on Tank Washington’s “R.I.P. POP,” a tribute to the LNS Crew member’s late father that has him “pouring out this Hennessy” in an old cemetery. Chino shoots Tank with the style of a subdued Hype Williams, emphasizing the vivid colors that contrast with Tank’s dark and somber attire. Rather than go the nostalgic route, the video instead portrays the grief Tank still feels, sticking to long, expansive shots to reflect the loneliness and ache that the lyrics and melody convey in the track itself.
Bloody Knives- “Poison Halo”
Eric Wareheim’s video for the HEALTH track “We Are Water” was already pretty fucked up, but when Bloody Knives commissioned Peter Spear to make a clip for their song “Poison Halo,” I imagine the pitch was basically “what if we did ‘We Are Water’ plus Hatchet plus some seizure inducing performance clips?” and the band said fuck yes because they’re not stupid.
Continuing that theme of bizarre mash-ups, the video Dom Rabalais made for Shmu’s “Sheila” is an extended riff on the weirdo with a camera motifs of works like American Beauty and Pecker, except it’s for a generation where everyone is a weirdo with a camera, forcing the titular Sheila to get meta, documenting people documenting themselves in some kind of selfie on selfie ouroboros.
Nick Hanover got his degree from Disneyland, but he’s the last of the secret agents and he’s your man. Which is to say you can find his particular style of espionage here at Ovrld as well as Loser City, where he mostly writes about comics. You can also flip through his archives at Comics Bulletin, which he is formerly the Co-Managing Editor of, and Spectrum Culture, where he contributed literally hundreds of pieces for a few years. Or if you feel particularly adventurous, you can always witness his odd .gif battles with his friends and enemies on twitter: @Nick_Hanover