Decoding Booze High: An Animated Music Video Directed by Poka Arts
What is your purpose in life? For some, it is to inspire the world, others, to make money, others still, to be the best they absolutely can be and for most, to just live. Whatever it is, there’s no denying the hard work involved. But often, we need a break, an escape to recalibrate our senses and to realign our goals. Alcohol is that perfect getaway for most people while others prefer alternatives such as drugs, friendships, sex, books, travel, music and more.
Worlasi captures these sentiments in Booze High, an escapist feel-good song that alludes to the wonders and dangers of relying on drugs and alcohol to fight our demons and reboot ourselves. Worlasi explores this concept further in the song’s animated music video.
The animated visual for Worlasi’s Booze High is a beauty packed with several deep messages which are as insightful as they are fun to decode. Conceived, directed and animated by Poka, the video takes a unique approach to the song which depending on which side of the coin you sit, is either an anthem to indulge your vices or a cautionary tale against them.
Poka’s anime influences are loud in this Afro Samurai inspired video. The video, which is the first off his wildly successful Outerlane EP, stars Worlasi, DJ Juls and a number of adversaries who each represent the obstacles sang about in the song.
The video begins with a warrior, Worlasi, poised for war and ready to take on the world; all obstacles be damned. He has a sword strapped to his side, a gourd and a red bandana tied over his head, signifying he’s out for blood with a fiery passion. The same do or die passion Worlasi has pursued his music career with since he broke onto Ghana’s music scene nearly three years ago.
There’s no theme music in real life but in Booze High, DJ Juls’ strings provide the perfect backdrop to an exciting action-packed journey with fluid, gorgeous animation. Playing his mandolin, DJ Juls sets the tone for the total destruction of the stumbling blocks life constantly throws at us. This starts with the naysayers and fake friends who constantly oppose one’s progress. These are represented as ninjas who are exceptionally trained spies that thrive on stealth and silent, gruesome assassinations.
Every time we go po( sitive) some nega( tive) dey // Some nigga dey back dey block we every day
But nope, we no dey stop, not any day // Everyday we thrive hard every day
Worlasi casually makes quick work of the stealthy detractors with fancy swordplay as he cautions against them and reaffirms his drive and commitment to succeed in spite of the hurdles. Of course, he tops this with a greedy swig of the contents of his gourd.
Charley e hard so we dey booze high everyday // Booze high, we dey booze high every day
The next villain is a large comical beast with a striking resemblance to Zhu Bajie from Journey to the West. In this adversary, Worlasi reminds us to believe in ourselves, to be so confident that we laugh in the face of the obstacles before us. Because why not?
Each time we take an introspective look at past hurdles, we can only laugh at the silliness of it all. We often stress over what seem like explosive threats when they really are lessons to strengthen and guide us. Worlasi already encouraged us to approach life with
But not alone. We never journey alone, no matter how lonely it might seem. It is the people around us that keep us sane in our efforts. No one man is an island and collaboration is key to this sanity and success. In Booze High, this is proven when DJ Juls assists Worlasi to overcome one of the toughest hurdles of all, the self.
The self is a tiny, unassuming old man with enough power to rival the gods. Conquer that and you become a god of your own. In this adversary, Worlasi re-learns the age-old mantra, don’t judge a book by its cover. Size is no indicator of strength. It’s the little things we do every day that build up into success and or failure.
This is the point where we often need an escape and where the temptation is strongest to remain in that escape, alcohol and /or drugs, it requires a complete mastery of self to come out and get right back on track. The goal is to never lose focus. More often than not, we need an external source, the power of trust and collaboration to jolt us back into reality
By trusting another human being instead of his booze and/or high, Worlasi opens himself up to the energy of the universe, energy that is shared through human connections. The same energy that exists between a chef and a customer, a writer and a publisher, a singer and a producer, Worlasi and DJ Juls. Poka masterfully depicts the producer-rapper/singer synergy and how they need each other to succeed by having DJ Juls take on one of Worlasi’s hurdles with sound, his greatest gift.
This is a metaphor for a support system, for friendship and the need to find people who want the best for you. It is a reminder to have a shoulder to lean on in times of despair. It is a reminder to not always tackle problems from one perspective. Another angle helps. The takeaway here is to trust in others to form a badass team.
Anything is possible when you have your eyes on the prize. What happens after you win it? That’s what Worlasi is confronted with once he reaches his goal. A gorgeous distraction, his biggest hurdle yet, love. Do you remain lonely at the top or do you give up the crown? Better yet, do you share the top spot with another? It’s a tough choice, but maybe, just maybe at the end of the day, love is all we’ve got and all we’re truly ever fighting for.
When it’s all said and done, we will always meet obstacles in our daily hustle and we will need an escape, whatever it is, to unwind. “Charley e hard so we dey booze high everyday // Booze high, we dey booze high every day”
The goal, however, remains clear, climb over Mount Olympus and become the god you are destined to be. After all, “for how long you go booze high every day? // Fam Check your bullseye someday”!
Enjoy Booze High below.
KaDi Yao Tay
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