Directed by Eric K. Yue, Ratking’s “Canal” is as raw as it gets. And yes, it’s not a new video, not in the slightest – both song and video came out circa 2014, around the time of SoundChips’ birth. But with it being one of my all time favourites, I’d be remiss if I didn’t at least say a few words about it now that I have a platform.

The production is pure East Coast – think samples, beat machines, boom bap adjacent – and Ratking’s verses sound like they were born to ride this beat. It’s like the group literally emerged from the womb with beat and verses for this song already laid out. Combined with the raw, unconfined energy of the song itself, the visuals – shot in New York City on 16mm film – convey an uncontainable, effervescent energy that perfectly encapsulates both the spirit of the song and the genre, displaying qualities that simply can’t and won’t be found in any other type of music. “Canal” is hop hop, pure and simple. And if you don’t agree, you can meet me outside.