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Shabazz Palaces Explore Floral Imagery, Body Language in ‘Are You’ Video


Sub Pop hip-hopper and SPIN Top 50 albums of 2011 honoree Shabazz Palaces dropped a fittingly stuttery video clip for the ellipsis-heavy “Are You… Can You… Were You? (Felt)” today. The video, directed by Seattle visual artist Maikoiyo Alley-Barnes, is chock-full of spastic floral imagery, long shots of African tribal sculptures, and the protagonist’s problems with other people: namely, this girl on a bike gets nearly hit by Shabazz in his Benz while biking, then returns home to her mother’s (we think?) disapproval of her wardrobe. The conversation flickers between English and a foreign language (we should probably brush up our Rosetta Stone), but the body language is the focus in the clip — even more so as the visuals conclude with a stack of nude portraits upstairs.

Check out our review of Black Up (2011, Sub Pop), which singles out “Are You…” as a choice cut.

Shabazz Palaces on Tour:
April 3 – Minneapolis, MN @ The Whole
April 4- Milwaukee, WI @ Mad Planet
April 5 – Chicago, IL @ Lincoln Hall
April 6 – Detroit, MI @ Magic Stick
April 7- Gambier, OH @ The Horn Gallery
April 8 – East Liberty, PA @ The Shadow Lounge
April 10 – Toronto, ON @ Lee’s Palace
April 11 – Montreal, QC @ II Motore
April 12 – Northampton, MA @ Iron Horse
April 13 – New York, NY @ SOB’s
April 14 – Brooklyn, NY @ Brooklyn Bowl