Bas’ ‘Diamonds’ Video Is A Tragic Cautionary Tale Of The Pursuit Of Happiness

Ari Lennox isn’t the only one over on Dreamville Records with a banger on her hands. Rapper Bas is back with new music since his joint project with Gunna, Pick Me Up, which was released back in April 2022. The Queens, New York representer teamed up with producers Linden Jay, Paul Castelluzzo, and Joe Harrisson to churn out his haunting new single, “Diamonds.”

The highly sought-after gem may be marketed as a girl’s best friend, but in hip-hop, we’ve seen time and time again that the more a rapper acquires these jewels, the bigger the target is on their backs for potential harm from those wishing to take it for themselves. On the track, Bas explores this sentiment but from a different angle.

Expressed in the stanza, “Wonder where the day goes, I been out of line / If love is all you need, then let me spend my pain / You n***a make it rain on / Hunnid on my wrist just to make it rain on / Look at all the whips, spick and they span / And you feel like you the man / But you cannot rub the stain off / No, you can not rub the stain off,” Bas details just how the relentless pursuit of these material possessions are often a front musicians put on to mask other much deeper emotional wounds rather than surface level vanity.

The track’s official video, directed by Ryan Doubiago, demonstrates just one tragic tale of how this plays out as Bas serves as the actor stuck in this mindset. The grayscale video opens with the quote, “we only talk about real sh*t when we’re f*cked up,” as Bas is seated on an opulent leather couch smoking and drinking dark liquor.

As the scenery rotates through several different social scenarios repeating Bas’ lifecycle, he becomes less and less connected to himself, his surroundings, and his former lover, which serves as a metaphor for the emptiness those tethered to this quest feel. Bas recklessly falls back into the party crowd when the scenes transition from the home-like setting when his former fling confronts him. But in the end, instead of being helped by this mysterious lady, his supposed saving grace, his chain ends up being his ultimate downfall.

The chain turns into a rope and hangs Bas (a metaphor for the flashy life ultimately being the death of him) as both his love interest and the world watch. Instead of intervening, the crowd pulls out their smartphones to record it with the intent to share it with the world as a piece of entertainment rather than the horror film it is.

When asked about the inspiration behind the track, Bas told Complex, “‘Diamonds’ stems from the stark realization that, as artists in the public light, our pains and traumas are consistently up for the public’s consumption.”

Bas has a solution for the problem, “We have to continually explore and give more of ourselves to feed the insatiable appetite of the audience. We experience and watch our peers go through life-altering and irrevocably damaging moments that just end up as clickbait or social media fodder. We make public appearances and wear masks in order to be who the public wants us to be. Shine bright for them. Yet our inner turmoils just fester underneath it all. The trappings of the life we chose and the dreams we pursue can often be the cause of our downfall.”

Watch the full video above.