Just in time for the widespread onset of seasonal affective disorder, A$AP Rocky released the music video for his moody “Phoenix” track (exclusively on MTV’s RapFix, BTW *hair flip*). Rocky’s lyrics touch on suicidal thoughts and musings on mortality, and appropriately, the video is dark to reflect the heavy topics explored in the song. Directed by Francesco Carrozzini (who shot the Harlem MC for the cover of L’uomo Vogue), the video carries the weight of a short film and employs a pretty star-studded cast to boot: Michael K. Williams of Boardwalk Empire and The Wire fame and our girl, supermodel Joan Smalls. All our Rocky-stanning (and being fam with Joan, of course) has come to fruition because MTV Style was fortunate enough to get an exclusive behind-the-scenes look at the video and (duh) its wardrobe!
Photo: RCA Records
As with most everything Rocky touches, the fashion is as much an integral part of the “Phoenix” music video as the song itself and not just via his Vogue director or leading lady. Every style element is 100 percent deliberate. Rather than going the label-laden route à la his DKNY-repping “Wild For The Night” music video, Rocky opted for a simpler aesthetic with “Phoenix.” “I didn’t want to do too much,” he told us. “I didn’t want no logos like that. I didn’t want no prints.” Swaddled in cherry red from head to toe (save black accents in the way of a felted hat and woven leather shoes) Rocky kept his look as the video’s narrator very cozy in Givenchy and Balmain thanks to Matthew Henson, Fashion Editor at Complex and the “only stylist [he] ever work[s] with.” #exclusive
Photo: RCA Records
As for Joan, she was styled by Stevie Dance in ethereal, billowing white Azzedine Alaïa, which coincidentally is also our dream wardrobe for a knick knack-obliterating fit of rage. #TWINZ It’s the perfect costuming for the video’s tortured heroine, a role that Joan straight up slays, IMHO. (Fun fact: Joan also had a small feature in Ricky Martin’s “It’s Alright” music video, the only other vid she’s ever been in to date!) While Rocky revealed that the Joan include was mostly Carrozzini’s idea, it probably didn’t hurt that the two had already met and traded style notes at the 2012 VMAs (an introduction facilitated by Weird Vibes’ red carpet correspondent at the time, Riff Raff).
+ WATCH A$AP ROCKY’S ’PHOENIX’ MUSIC VIDEO