Azure "Nine Nine" Video Premiere
Azure "Nine Nine" Video Premiere

OKP Premiere: MC Azure Ups His Game In The New Video For "Nine Nine"

Lenny Kravitz, Grace Jones, Lauryn Hill, Lion Babe, Thundercat, SZA & More Rock The Afropunk Festival 2015 in Brooklyn, NY.

Draped in neon and toting a sly lyrical style, Oakland MC Azure invades back alleys and stairwells in his new video for "Nine Nine." The clip, which was directed by David Camarena, casts the young Azure opposite fleeting images of beautiful women and sparse industrial zones--it's a sexy sort of dystopia, and the young rap cat is our guide. "My pen got so much ink / I could probably do like a whole sleeve," Azure promises us as he drops bar after bar of shrewd self-promotion while the "Nine Nine" beat, produced by Iamsu!, hums like a 23rd century holodeck booting up.

Azure's rhyme work here is strong, but with a definitively laid-back air, and with a beat made of crisp snares alongside buttery chords it's easy to suss out a strong Soulection influence in "Nine Nine"--expect the track to feature prominently in your favorite DJ's next big set. And so the video fits the music to a tee as we see bright lights splash across bodies and back alleys at every turn. A Bay Area veteran who has plenty of production bonafides, he's been steadily rising for years now, and told Okayplayer that rapping was something he used to do at home in front of the mirror, but it wasn't until high school that he began stepping out, entering battles and playing with beat construction. "Recording at a home studio for the first time as a teenager really drew me in and I began to find myself in a notebook more often than a sketchbook. I think my soul or spirit (whatever you wanna call it) was beginning to reveal its true quest to me," Azure said.

"Nine Nine" is the first single off of Azure's upcoming album project, Leap Year, which has been steadily progressing over the past two years. "It's bits and pieces away from being done," he told Okayplayer, hinting that fans should expect a June release date. We'll be crossing off days on our calendar, but until Okayplayer is pleased to present the world premiere of Azure's "Nine Nine" video. Watch it below.