Scrolling Headlines:

Report: UMass football’s Todd Stafford arrested Saturday morning in Stamford, Connecticut -

Monday, July 20, 2015

UMass names Molly O’Mara newly-created associate director of athletics for communications and PR -

Monday, July 20, 2015

Baker approves state budget, UMass to receive $5.25 million less than legislature’s proposed figure -

Friday, July 17, 2015

UMass bathroom policy to provide comfort, safety for transgender and non-gender conforming students -

Thursday, July 16, 2015

Long-time UMass professor Normand Berlin, 83, dies -

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

UMass professor and poet James Tate dies at 71 -

Thursday, July 9, 2015

State legislators propose budget, UMass could receive almost $532 million -

Wednesday, July 8, 2015

Cause of death determined for UMass student Chloe Malast -

Monday, July 6, 2015

Nick Mariano, Zach Oliveri transferring from UMass men’s lacrosse program -

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Four months after banning Iranian students from certain graduate programs, UMass announces new measures to ensure compliance with U.S. law -

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Justin King sentenced to eight to 12 years in prison -

Monday, June 29, 2015

Two future UMass hockey players selected in 2015 NHL Draft -

Saturday, June 27, 2015

Supreme Court ruling clears way for same-sex marriage nationwide -

Friday, June 26, 2015

Former UMass center Cady Lalanne taken 55th overall by Spurs in 2015 NBA Draft -

Friday, June 26, 2015

Second of four men found guilty on three counts of aggravated rape in 2012 UMass gang rape case -

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Boston bomber speaks out for first time: ‘I am sorry for the lives I have taken’ -

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

King claims sex with woman was consensual during alleged 2012 gang rape -

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Wrongful death suit filed in death of UMass student -

Thursday, June 18, 2015

Ryan Bamford uses online Q&A session to discuss UMass football conference search, renovation plans, cost of attendance -

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Opening statements delivered, first witnesses called in second trial for alleged 2012 gang rape at UMass -

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Aesop Rock to bring talents to Pearl Street

Wikimedia Commons

Underground hip-hop veteran Aesop Rock will grace Northampton with his presence this Saturday evening with a performance at Pearl Street Nightclub. With impeccable talent and a solid reputation, it’s amazing that more people still have not heard of this Los Angeles-based New York native.

Since the independent release of his debut LP “Music for Earthworms” in 1997, Aesop Rock has been at the forefront of the alternative rap scene. His first major breakthrough came in 2001 with the release of his LP “Labor Days,” which spawned a widely successful single called “Daylight.”

Sixteen years and 12 releases into his career, Aesop still knows how to give his fans what they want. His 2012 release “Skelethon” debuted at No. 21 on the Billboard 200, selling 14,000 copies in its first week.

Nowadays, Aesop is hard at work touring the United States to promote his latest studio effort. Combining complex word play with deep, often introspective poetry, Aesop is a lyrical force to be reckoned with. Examining a variety of modern topics, including everything from labor issues to organized religion, Aesop’s sharp wit and piercing criticisms are spellbinding.

In spite of his unique blend of styles and unorthodox approach to rap, Aesop’s music has never managed to capture the attention of any mainstream hip-hop fan base. Instead, Aesop’s loyal cult following is made up of an eclectic mix of music enthusiasts, with many of them being primarily indie-rock fans.

Critics of his music often call Aesop a “dictionary MC,” adding that it can be difficult to grasp his lyrical messages that so often dwell beneath layers of fast-paced, highly stylized verse. But in today’s musical landscape, with many seemingly illiterate wannabe-gangsters jamming the airwaves to sell the same brand of flashy, tired materialism, many listeners may find Aesop’s approach to music deliciously refreshing.

“I never have going into song-making with the assumption that anyone will like what I do,” Aesop said, attempting to explain what distinguishes him from the mainstream rap superstars. “I’m not aiming for some gigantic target, I’m kind of just making tunes as I go.”

The 36-year-old rapper is certainly no stranger to the art of live performance, although he said performing in front of an audience still gives him anxiety.

“While I spend a lot of time being nervous and fearing that I will somehow irreversibly f*** up, once I get out there I usually find myself thinking, ‘Oh yeah, I enjoy this,'” Aesop said of his performance-related anxieties.

While the king of underground rap may be self-conscious about his own abilities, one thing is clear: his devoted followers keep coming back.

“I am so thankful that people are into this stop,” Aesop said. “Seeing people fill a room to see my old ass hopping around on a stage is indescribable. I hope I can give them at least a slightly different experience than they get at home with the album on a stereo.”

The show, including opening acts Busdriver and DJ Jay Skee, will start at 9 p.m. Tickets are available in advance through the Northampton Box Office, or at the door.

Chris Trubac can be reached at ctrubac@student.umass.edu.

Comments
One Response to “Aesop Rock to bring talents to Pearl Street”
  1. Chris says:

    Do yourself a favor and check out some of this guy’s songs on youtube before you decide to see him live. Hipster’s love to think there is some deep meaning behind what he is saying, but he’s just using complicated words to explain what he sees around him in his life. It’s not refreshing, it’s pretentious crap IMO.

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