If you’ve been paying attention, you already know that Mississauga rapper/producer Keita Juma is one of our favourites. His latest album, Chaos Theory, is one of the strongest projects we’ve heard this year, and it brought us the Fake Art Records posse cut visual for “Come Over,” featuring labelmate and collaborator Brendan Philip. KJ has been relatively quiet since his performance at Field Trip earlier this summer, but we grew wise to the fact that he was plotting something when he dropped a pair of Soundcloud loosies on the low last week.
Today, Keita returns with a brand new music video for “Belly,” a sprawling, standout track from Chaos Theory. KJ crafts a dark, grinding, post-Yeezus beat, providing a solid platform for some Shabazz Palaces-esque stream of consciousness flow. “Don’t cross it, don’t cross it, don’t cross it,” Juma cautions, battling cacophonous drums and a levitating bassline. “Belly” combines West Coast aggression with far out experimentation—a welcome cross section of musical psychedelia and hip-hop bravado.
The video itself is a visual wonder, taking place at Toronto dim sum palace Rol San. Director Charlie Tyrell took thousands of still photos using 13 different cameras mounted to a mind-blowing rig. Tyrell then had 5000 photos printed, and painstakingly animated them by hand, frame by frame. The end result is a kaleidoscopic stop-motion mosaic, with Juma rattling off bars in a Chinese restaurant like he’s in some kind of vivid, late night Toronto-themed flip-book.
“I feel like Morpheus' nephew has taken up shop in Chinatown,” Keita told Complex. “The 'Belly' video took us on a journey through dim sum and nighttime negotiations—Rol San tried to kick us out mid-second verse, but we finessed us an extra 30 minutes somehow."
Watch the video for “Belly” by Keita Juma above, and catch him performing as part of the 9th annual Manifesto Festival of Community and Culture on Wednesday, September 16th at the Hoxton, alongside GoldLink, A K U A, and host DJ Nino Brown.