Kembe X debuts his first video



When I went down to South Holland to met teenage rapper Kembe X and his crew, the Village, for a recent B Side feature, they were working on a video for a cut off his debut mix tape, Self Rule. A couple days ago Kembe and company released a clip for "Sawbuck (New Smoker's Anthem)," an entirely different track—the video in progress when I met them in December, for the song "Backwards," is still being edited.

The video for "Sawbuck" is pretty impressive. It has a sleek, dark quality to match the tune's smooth, downcast R&B instrumental; its narrative brings together the two anxious, struggling teenagers Kembe raps about, who obviously mean to blanket their everyday pain with a thick cloud of weed smoke. Kembe and the Village are in the middle of a campaign to bring the crew to the big time, and the "Sawbuck" video is just the beginning. According to Village business coordinator Genesis Denton, their next mix tape, Village of the Damned, is still scheduled for a late February release (it might also come out in the beginning of March), and right now they're all focused on yet another goal—getting to South by Southwest. The folks in the Village are planning on selling physical copies of Self Rule on the streets this weekend to raise some money to get down to Austin. If they can translate their online hustle to street sales, finding enough cash for SXSW shouldn't be a problem.

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