Isaiah Rashad / Heavenly Father
by: T.M. Brown
March 21, 2014
When it snows enough in New York the city gets quiet. Like, eerily quiet—especially at night. The din of horns and sirens and chatter gets muffled by the miles of powdery white dampeners laid over concrete. Everything sounds distant, just out of earshot.
Isaiah Rashad filmed the first half of the video for Heavenly Father from his January debut Cilvia Demo on a snowy night down on Wall Street. The shoot is desolate—the stock exchange and offices closed what looks like hours ago leaving little reason for anyone to be down there—and lonely, but the closed cropped camera angles of Rashad walking the streets through fresh powder suggest something intimately claustrophobic, like a good Catholic taking solace in a confessional. Its fitting, then, that Heavenly Father is brutally honest about struggles that hip-hop artists arent necessarily open about, including suicide (Lordie, give me something for my soul / See I dont wanna think of suicide / So please dont take the lock key off my door.) and solitude (See you cant handle pressure on your own / So why you carry boulders by yourself.).
Towards the end of the video Rashad mouths his lyrics on a snow-covered stage in front of an empty amphitheater. The camera drops back, the angles get wider. Its still lonely. Rashad is tightly boxed in by the frame of the theaters architecture. You start to wonder how quiet the theater was that day, draped in cottony white.