Rapper and Brian Eno collaborator Jelani Blackman takes a moonlit stroll through the city streets in his stylish new video
West London rapper Jelani Blackman made an auspicious start when he appeared in 2014: his first track was a collaboration between himself, production duo Sylas, and none other than Brian Eno. Since then, he’s been slowly opening himself up to the world with moonlit tracks like “Twenty//Three” and “Repeater”. The atmosphere remains smoky in each song, but it’s Blackman’s uniquely recognisable voice — husky and deep as an ocean, but also soulful — that’s the star of the show.
Both tracks appear on Blackman’s new EP, 1-4 (5-8 will follow later), as well as “Submarine”, which displays a slightly less hazy direction with its upbeat piano chords and lopsided soul. The song’s simple and stylish music video, directed by Peter Marsden of LuckyMe studio (whose previous credits include videos for Rustie, Cashmere Cat and Lunice), takes place entirely in monochrome against the snowy streets. “It’s great working with an artist like Jelani,” says Marsden. “The track has a lot of depth, so we were able to focus on simplicity and tone. The snow was a gift.”
“I’m walking through the moment when I hit that submarine state, wrapped up and solo, but still involved with whatever’s going down,” adds Blackman. “At the deep end of the night.”
Jelani Blackman's 1-4 EP is out now on Quality Time Recordings