ASAP Rocky uses a surreal storytelling method and a smooth Tame Impala sample in his trippy “Sundress” video. Rather than simply letting the camera run through the mayhem and mishaps of an adventurous night out in a sweaty, New York club, Rocky adopts the interesting visual trick of telling the tale through elaborately staged, still-life tableaus, capturing the raucous scene in dynamic poses that suggest photography infused with movement and life. Basically, picture the “mannequin challenge” from a couple years ago by way of the Weeping Angels from Doctor Who — frozen in the moment until the camera looks away, but when it swings back, everybody’s doing something new.
Directed by Frank Lebon, the video certainly makes another interesting addition to Rocky’s canon of stunning and innovative visual accompaniments. While his latest album, Testing, may have arrived with a bit of a thud, the fun of ASAP Rocky is in seeing how he’ll bring new life to each single with his flair for visual storytelling and simple but brilliant twists on existing work. For instance, only Rocky could flip a Moby sample into the dynamic and psychedelic look he used on “ASAP Forever,” and his “Fukk Sleep” collaboration with FKA Twigs — herself a conventional rules-breaker — is a sight to behold.
And with “Sundress” including work from renowned remixer Danger Mouse — perhaps still best known for his Beatles/Jay-Z mashup The White Album — it looks like Rocky is already headed off in an exciting new direction musically. Hopefully, there’s a lot more where “Sundress” came from. Catch Rocky on his Injured Generation Tour through the winter as he promotes Testing, which is out now via RCA Records.