Considering the weight of this record and the insane amount of promotion the video has received, the end result is underwhelming at best, and ridiculous at worst. Aside from a generically inspirational (as only Khaled can execute) three-minute conversation with legendary dancehall artist Ox, the rest of the video serves as an uninspired product placement extravaganza, with just as much focus on Ciroc, Hennessy and Bevel hair trimmers as the artists themselves.
Product placement in rap videos has become so commonplace that it’s barely offensive anymore, however, the rest of the video does nothing to offset the corny corporate-sponsored shots throughout the 9-minute visual. The vaguely dramatic opening of the video quickly gives way to the same island/boat/jet ski aesthetic that’s been rehashed in countless videos since “Big Pimpin’.”
To cap off the 9-minute snooze fest, we’re treated to roughly two minutes of Khaled awkwardly dancing with ornately-clad island women and jumping off of boats. Seriously.
If not for the legitimately fantastic quality of Nas’ lyrics over an incredibly dope and inexplicably cleared Fugees sample, this video would be nearly unwatchable.
With artists like Kendrick Lamar and Childish Gambino consistently pushing the visual envelope, it’s time to retire the generic “cars and boats” rap video and craft some visuals that compliment their accompanying songs, not detract from them.
By Brent Bradley. Follow him on Twitter.
Photo Credit: YouTube