The track’s been kicking around for a few months now, but the video for Popcaan’s “Everything Nice” dropped a few days ago.
Popcaan is one of Jamaica’s younger and brighter DJ stars, having come up under Vybz Kartel’s wing and charmed the world with his 2012 hits “Only Man She Want” and “Party Shot.” He’s racked up numerous awards and honors since then, including making the Billboard R&B/Hip-Hop charts with “Only Man She Want,” the rare dancehall crossover that became inescapable on US radio.
Following in the steps of Vybz’s Kingston Story, Popcaan has hooked up with Brooklyn’s Mixpak records and DJ Dubbel Dutch, whose slow-jam beat is the foundation for “Everything Nice.” Sparse production and a deathly slow tempo give this track a particularly serious vibe, bringing out a tone of matter-of-fact melancholy in Popcaan’s voice that we’ve not often heard before. Props to Dubbel Dutch for that tasty little loop at the very end of the track- just another element of the ghostly on this track.
The video is equally dramatic, though a little thin on content. It mostly focuses on Popcaan himself, as he is readied for a photo shoot that never quite seems to come. Broadcasting an attitude of weary, almost stoic defiance, the video is played out in one slow black and white shot after another. As the song plays on, the cast of the video grows. The nameless characters who turn up bring a touch of community and a suggestion of belonging to the proceedings, pulling Popcaan out of his ironically named solitude (few songs called “Everything nice” make things sound less so) and spice up a video that seems perfectly content to allow nothing much to go on. That’s not really as a hard of a dig as it sounds, though- “Everything Nice” is a slow, contemplative song, and it’s set to a video that, while not entirely able to live up to the quality of its partner, compliments it well enough.
Popcaan’s new LP, title TBA, is out later this year on Mixpak records.