VIDEO PREMIERE: Experimental hip hop artist GypjaQ delivers haunting visual for single “sInnIstIr”
By Sound Check
March 2, 2017
Reclaiming ties to the motherland has long been a priority of Black artists in America. The aesthetic and vibrations that Pan-Africanism provides has taken root in all iterations of Black music, whether it be the exuberance of jazz or the mellowed spirituality often found in neo soul. Harlem born artist GypjaQ doesn’t shy away from this legacy in his new video for “sInnIstIr,” a song that exalts and exclaims, a performance that is filled with excitement and intensity. Known for crafting songs with thought-provoking lyrics, strong beats, and stellar vocals, his music dwells in the center of a venn diagram of musical genres. His performance art roots are on full display in this video, giving his audiences a wholly engaging experience through high-energy dancing and meaningful theatrical moments. The Chris Herde directed video is a perfect match for the treatment, an awe-striking visual with references to West African ritual and tradition, and contemporary movement. In the video, GypjaQ performs elements of Yoruba rituals, summoning the captive spirits of the Orisha from the forest. They break free of their binds, assemble with him, and perform a fusion of dances traditionally used in Yoruba worship. In his own words, GypjaQ talks about the inspiration for the piece here: “The video is a spell. I want it to not only inspire change, but to itself, break loose the chains that bind every bit of the power of the oppressed. I believe that means embracing many of the things white supremacy has said is evil, from African spirituality to women’s sexual liberation. They used to call both things witchcraft…Well, let’s return to magic.” And the magic is palpable, present and contagious. Stream “sInnIstIr” by GypjaQ below and get to know the artist on www.gypjaq.com.
By T. McLendon, AFROPUNK Contributor