Saul Williams premiered his new video for his most recent single “Burundi” today, ahead of the upcoming release of his new multimedia project and album, MartyrLoserKing.
Williams is known for his ability to blend his slam poetry style with rap and hip hop influences. “Burundi,” featuring Emily Kokal of Warpaint, is electric, building with energy from it’s instrumental introduction all the way to it’s explosive chorus.
The video echoes the tone of the song, assaulting the viewer with abrupt transitional clips ranging from videos of police cars being attacked to pieces of the periodic table and chemical elements. Director Kivu Ruhorahoza taped each graphic, by Antonio Ribeiro, and video clip together with the running theme of a hacker “in your hard drive,” as Williams says in the song. Sporadic clips of computer elements and coding flow alongside the rest of the chaos.
Before the madness breaks loose within the video, however, the entire instrumental bit at the beginning is a wide angle shot of Williams sitting in a chair in a living room. The camera continues to move closer to Williams, all shot from behind the chair, until he starts singing, which is when the camera abruptly shoots Williams’ face upside down, starting the eerie discontinuity of the rest of the video.
One of the most interesting elements of the video were the lyrics and news articles projected throughout the transitional graphics. It gave a newsreel element that accompanied the news footage strewn together by the hacker tone of the video.
Vice premiered the video on their website as part of Williams’ new multimedia compilation for his new album, MartyrLoserKing. According to Williams’ official website, the music portion of the project will be released by Fader Label. The rest of the project will be released as it comes. Williams plans on releasing a graphic novel to accompany the music portion, as well as more videos and posts on his MartyrLoserKing website.
Even though Williams just wrapped his MartyrLoserKingdom Tour back in May, there is definitely more to be released from Williams throughout the summer.
Watch the video for “Burundi” below: