Sir Michael Rocks – “In My Mode” [Video]

By Jack Barnes

Hip-hop and anime. Two words that are almost as different as the distance from their places of origin, and yet they’re united harmoniously in the music video for “In My Mode” by Sir Michael Rocks. Similar to Chicago legend Kanye West’s trek to Tokyo for art collaboration, Sir Mike immersed himself in Japanese culture during a month-long trip to Tokyo, using the city’s fascinating locations to film his visuals, shot and directed by PAS. “The Chicago emcee Sir Michael Rocks has always been a nerd,” noted gaming site Kill Screen in their premiere of the “In My Mode” video, adding that “it’s essentially a three-minute homage to modern shonen anime.” Enjoy this video stream below after the jump.

The video is broken down into two scenes – a back alley brawl filmed in Kyodo, Japan and a closing scene capturing wide-angle natural forest and field shots in Setagaya. “In the opening scenes when those two doors open with yin yang signs and then the cave with the greet water, that’s a reference toFullmetal Alchemist,” Sir Michael Rocks explains. The dark, time-lapse shots also take influence fromOne Punch Man and Kill la Kill. “Those shows are set in the city and utilize side streets, alley ways, and bars,” he adds. “When we were shooting those alley scenes it was that same aesthetic.” The fights, cuts to the eyes, and emojis are in reference to storylines and emotions shown in Dragon Ball Z, while the open field setting and red eye contacts, which represent evil, in the closing scene take influence fromAkame Ga Kill. One could almost say he activates his Sharingan, a reference from the popular Shonen anime Naruto.

Sir Michael Rocks’ Populair is a project that trades the common soul or jazz breaks for video game loops. You’ll quickly recognize a popular Street Fighter soundbite that’s repeated throughout “Perfect” as Sir Michael Rocks is found matched against himself in the pixelated visual that debuted via The A.V. Club. Continuing this theme, an obscure Resident Evil clip lurks beneath Chicago footwork-inspired production on “Come Outside.” “The menacing music goes well with the video, which features sparklers being lit up in a dark area while Michael gets his juke on,” said Mass Appeal.

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Props to Sir Michael


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