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The video opens with a clip of phone-shot footage from the crowd at Stormzy’s album launch party last week, before switching to a scene of Collier miming the song’s grand piano intro from inside an empty, ominously lit warehouse. A title card informs us that the video was shot on the same night as the aforementioned launch party, jumping back and forth between the party itself and similar solo scenes from each of the featured artists.
Three of them – Ms Banks, Amaarae and Black Sherif – also have guest spots on the song itself. While Collier doesn’t, he was one of the song’s co-writers, and appears elsewhere on the namesake album. As revealed earlier this month, a total of 28 artists were involved in bringing ‘This Is What I Mean’ to life.
Have a look at the video below:
‘This Is What I Mean’ – the album – arrived last Friday (November 25) via Stormzy’s own #Merky label, and featured the singles ‘Hide & Seek’ and ‘Firebabe’. It was released alongside a personal message from the rapper, in which he implored fans to “listen to this album with an open heart”.
Shortly before he released the album, Stormzy said in an interview that he’d “made peace with the idea that no one may like it”. He needn’t have done so: NME gave ‘This Is What I Mean’ a four-star review, with Sam Moore writing that it sees the rapper “continue to lead the way” and “[let] his listeners in like never before”.
Among the many upcoming celebrations for ‘This Is What I Mean’ is Stormzy’s headlining appearance at next year’s All Points East festival. There, he’ll curate an entire day of programming, with that day being co-branded as ‘This Is What We Mean Day’.