Right now, Cardi B is facing two felony assault charges over a fight in a New York strip club last year. She pleaded not guilty earlier this week. So maybe it’s significant that Cardi’s video for “Press,” the fearsome single that she released last month, takes place at a trial, where Cardi faces a whole panel of judges before being sent away to prison. Of course, the video also features Cardi naked and covered in blood, standing amidst a whole pile of naked bodies, so this isn’t entirely an art-imitates-life situation.
The “Press” video is an almost hilariously violent and absurd piece of work. There’s a storyline to the thing. Cardi finds her man cheating on her with two women at once, and she gets murderous over it. And through the video, she stays violent, right up until the beautifully grisly and unexpected final shots. But director Jora Frantzis’ video also goes on some weird, visually striking trips. For a whole lot of the video, Cardi is nude, but without nipples or genitalia, and she’s surrounded by models with similar Barbie-doll features. So maybe it’s not NSFW? Be careful, in any case.
It’s always fun to see a pop star play on her public image in such over-the-top ways, and this video is a fantastically trippy example, a bit like a few of Rihanna’s more far-out clips. It’s also a fun video! Cardi does choreography! And wears wild outfits! And drowns someone in a prison toilet! Check it out below.
“Press” is out now on the streaming services.