Lord Apex blesses us with a visual conversation in devotion to his soul-searching ‘Speak For Yourself’ with the visionary ABOVEGROUND.
When SSV3 dropped I instantly gravitated towards ‘Speak For Yourself’ as soon as I heard it. In my eyes it’s more than just music, there’s something higher to it that can’t be explained, you just feel it – I can’t label it any other way. Now, most may be thinking ‘this guys waffling’, but if you’ve ever encountered a powerful piece of music, especially during a particular period in life when it’s needed, it just utterly takes a hold of you: chills, goosebumps, emotions, the connection – you’ll experience all of it, if not more and for myself and many others this is that song.
Whether it’s the hypnotic harmony sampled and chopped courtesy of Droppedmilk or Apex’s consoling confessions that weave throughout: ‘most higher I look up to the sky because I’m needing your help/that’s when I went inside the trip and then I seen it myself’ – to be fair, it’s probably both of them but one thing for sure is that it’s certainly one of the most compelling pieces from the album (which is saying a lot since they’re all so gripping). Either way, I’ve always wanted to get an article written up purely dedicated to this introspective piece, but kind of missed out on the opportunity – well, until now: enter the official video.
‘Who can say they rode a vintage BMW, a race horse and a lowrider bike in 24hrs in Paris!?’ – Max Robin (Producer and Manager)… AP of course.
The multi-faceted rapper joins arms with ABOVEGROUND to bring this auditory gem to life with a 16mm Bolex camera initially depicting Apex embracing the role of a flâneur roaming through the narrow streets of Paris amongst the imposing renaissance architecture as he puts pen to paper, journaling away in his little blue book across the opening few frames. Away goes the journal, as AP takes a stroll with ‘Syncopation’, one of Brian Beaunez’ race horses through the rustic roads of the Parisian outskirts in the blinding sun as he lowers the frames of his Prada shades while looking to the heavens.
Ensuing his brief detour, Apex returns to the heart of the city, dancing through puddles sporting a B.B. Simmons belt, lounging in Corteiz within his hotel suite and later chilling in a cosy combination of SB Dunks and a Nike tracksuit by the Seine river with a dreamy vision of the Eiffel Tower cascading in the distance. In my eyes this is where that 16mm format really shines, as the colour grading on Alexandre Nervic’s behalf is just mind blowing: the colour blocks between the tower, clouded sky and cherry blossoms are unbelievably vivid, giving off a dream-like haze – it really has you ‘seeing rose gold’ within everything.
Apex finally heads to Montemarte to sit in as a muse for Parisian based portrait artist Stéphane Plouviez, who cooly puffs on a cigarillo as his rendition of the rapper forms before our very eyes just in time for the scene of AP cruising off in a vintage bimmer before closing the curtains.
ABOVEGROUND seals the movie with the ‘pièce de résistance’, a monologue of dubious doubt for one’s self recited in French, truly reflecting the song’s journey;
Take in the breathtaking movie over on Lord Apex’s Youtube channel and show some love to his official debut studio album ‘SSV3’.