“You’re around this type of environment so much, that it doesn’t bother you.”
– ‘Freeway’ Ricky Ross
I feel terrible about sleeping on this for so long. While this video is actually a short film, it does feature clips of rappers Future, Alley Boy, and Big Bank Black. Bear with me, readers.
I’ve been a bit hesitant to throw this up on the site, as the entire project is clearly something more than just rap music — bigger than rap, even. However, this project has been delicately put together to present an idea that is undoubtedly connected to all the Southern rappers that appear in the film. While so many different images and sounds are being presented throughout the video, rap music fans will almost assuredly hold on to the juxtaposition being made between trap music, and all the distressing clips: Charles Manson, ‘Freeway’ Ricky Ross, drug addiction, multiple bothersome news reports, and et cetera.
Trap music’s rise to prominence has had an interesting effect on the music. Being deeply rooted in, and revolving around the central phenomena of a trap house (drug house), the struggles, violence, and vices tied to trap houses continue to be the driving force behind trap music to this day. However, something has clearly changed about how the music, and content, is received by the public — almost like there’s something deceiving about trap music in 2013. With the bulk of attention now being taken up by their absurdly over-the-top, Mr.Zone 6-esque covers, as well as the hyper hi-hats and 808s, it’s no longer quite clear to most listeners how serious, and even fucked up the content can be, and this is exactly where “Harbinger” comes in. When put alongside the aforementioned disturbing clips and images, trap music can suddenly become all the more real to the listener again, thus making ‘Harbinger’ a switch of sorts for listeners. First and foremost, the music presented is catchy, but as the images begin to sink in, and the general sense of gloom finally synchronize in your head, it becomes something else. It’s nihilistic. Bleak. Cold. And what the fuck?
Truly, this is worth applauding when you watch it and think about it. The Devil has taken a popular/widespread form of music that has basically been trivialized into something that ‘HYPES PEOPLE UP,’ and crafted a strong perspective that can’t be forgotten about. Against what initial viewings and thoughts might lead you to believe, this isn’t some crazy man aimlessly stringing together images and religious motifs to scare you. Rather, it’s a perfectly clear view into how crazy the world around him can be, and how he isn’t so crazy for being driven insane by it.
DOWNLOAD: The Devil – The Harbinger (mixtape)