Kamasi Washington Gets His Game on in Epic “Street Fighter Mas” Music Video

Music News Kamasi Washington
Kamasi Washington Gets His Game on in Epic “Street Fighter Mas” Music Video

Kamasi Washington’s sophomore album Heaven and Earth is out this Friday, June 22, and in anticipation of the record’s release, Washington has put out a music video for his most recent single, “Street Fighter Mas.”

The video takes Washington through a videogame-influenced L.A. to a Street Fighter battle. The video features cameos from Street Fighter legends Gootecks and Combofiend, and producer, DJ and musician Kevin Gilliam—also known as BattleCat. The video is interesting, and somewhat eerie, in its use of videogame stylizations, with the people in it often moving robotically or in-sync with one another. Speech is redirected into text, including a sign that says, “Read Sign,” like how one would read speech bubbles in a game. The music adds tension and anticipation leading up to the battle, and gives power to the dramatic walking scenes, with the visuals heightening the emotion of the song. The video refrains from diving into video/arcade game animation, but the fade-in of the final scene with Washington at first could be mistaken for animation in its sharp edges and high contrast. The video closes with the fading music being overtaken by a countdown to “Game Over.”

This video is another collaboration with director A.G. Rojas, who previously worked with Washington on the “Truth” short film for the Harmony of Difference EP.

“I love inhabiting Kamasi’s world, and ‘Street Fighter Mas’ was an opportunity to take a left turn and explore the surreal qualities of that world,” said Rojas in a statement. “It was a true labor of love for everyone involved, coming from a desire to interpret the cinematic qualities of the track into something equally unpredictable, familiar, absurd and ultimately triumphant.”

Washington has released two tracks from his new record in addition to “Street Fighter Mas”: “Fists of Fury” and “The Space Travelers Lullaby.” The day before the album’s debut on June 22, Washington will play an intimate show in celebration at The World Stage in his hometown of Los Angeles. The show will be livestreamed via Washington’s Facebook and on Boiler Room.

Watch the music video for “Street Fighter Mas” below and check out a performance by Washington at Paste beneath that. You can find his tour dates further down.

Kamasi Washington Tour Dates:

23 – Pasadena, Calif. @ Arroyo Seco
24 – Vancouver, British Columbia @ Queen Elizabeth Theatre
25 – Saskatoon, Saskatchewan @ Saskatchewan Jazz Festival
28 – Fairfield, Conn. @ The Warehouse
29 – Waitsfield, Vt. @ Friendly Gathering
30 – Montreal, Quebec @ Festival International de Jazz de Montreal

12 – Berkeley, Calif. @ Greek Theater†
25 – Detroit, Mich. @ Chene Park Amphitheater

04 – Dublin, Ireland @ Beatyard Festival
05 – Oxfordshire, U.K. @ Wilderness Festival
06 – Haarlem, Holland @ Caprera
07 – Mainz, Germany @ Frankfurter Hof Mainz @ Zitadelle Mainz
09 – Antwerp, Belgium @ Jazz Middelheim
10 – Copenhagen, Denmark @ HAVEN
11 – Gothenburg, Sweden @ Way Out West
12 – Helsinki, Finland @ FLOW
16 – Seoul, South Korea @ Muv Hall
18 – Tokyo, Japan @ Summer Sonic Festival
19-20 – Tokyo, Japan @ Billboard Live
21 – Osaka, Japan @ Big Cat
31 – Willemstad, Curacao @ North Sea Jazz Curacao

08 – Lehavot HaBashan, Israel @ Meteor Festival
23 – San Diego, Calif. @ Viejas Arena‡
25 – Los Angeles, Calif. @ Hollywood Bowl‡
29 – Dallas, Texas @ Pavilion at Toyota Factory‡
30 – Houston, Texas @ Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion‡

17 – Seattle, Wash. @ The Showbox
18 – Portland, Ore. @ Crystal Ballroom
19 – San Francisco, Calif. @ TBA
20 – San Luis Obispo, Calif. @ Fremont Theater
22 – Santa Fe, N.M. @ Meow Wolf
24 – Salt Lake City, Utah @ The Complex
25 – Aspen, Colo. @ Belly Up
26 – Denver, Colo. @ Ogden Theatre
27 – Boulder, Colo. @ Boulder Theater
29 – Kansas City, Mo. @ The Truman
31 – Iowa City, Iowa @ The Englert Theatre

01 – Minneapolis, Minn. @ TBA
02 – Madison, Wis. @ The Sylvee
03 – Chicago, Ill. @ Riviera Theatre
05 – Toronto, Calif. @ Sony Centre for The Performing Arts
07 – Portland, Maine @ State Theatre
08 – Boston, Mass. @ Royale
09 – Philadelphia, Pa. @ Electric Factory
10 – Washington D.C. @ Lincoln Theatre
14 – Richmond, Va. @ The National
15 – Raleigh, N.C. @ The Ritz
16 – Nashville, Tenn. @ Marathon Music Works
17 – Atlanta, Ga. @ Buckhead Theatre

(* = with Alt-J)
(† = with Sylvan Esso)
(‡ = with Florence + The Machine)

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