Aesop Rock – Labor Days

February 26, 2009
Aesop Rock - Labor Days

Aesop Rock - Labor Days

One of the things that makes Aesop Rock’s third full album of mystic urban tale-spinning so consistently fascinating is that it seems to narrate the struggles of millions. This is the album that perfectly characterizes your job, whatever it may be. Struggling to get out of bed in the morning, trudging to the subway station, riding the bus, stuck in traffic, driving the steamroller, disintegrating in the cubicle, waiting for the train home, and collapsing in the bed, muscles throbbing. The fact that Aesop Rock was working full time as a waiter during the creation of Labor Days makes its overall concept all that more genuine, but it is the execution of the album that is truly impressive. Aesop’s delivery is stark, uncompromising, funny, intelligent, and without match in flow. Pick a line – “I smoke cigarettes down to filter smoke the filter down to space / now I’m gonna roll this question tight and smoke that shit up in your face / now if you were to alter masks every time fame circus approaches / do you really think your maker wouldn’t notice? (Think about it.)” Aesop’s brilliant, philosophical, often cross referential lyrics seem endless, and are held up by a rock solid albeit rough foundation of production from Aesop himself. The subtle eastern flavor and harrowing dynamics of the music highlights his mystical, burning representation of the plight of the working person. Every song is classic Aesop: the shocking delicacy of “No Regrets,” the dragging heat of “Daylight” and the flowing zen of “Battery” only scratch the surface of the album’s highlights. One would be hard pressed to find a more challenging and rewarding hip hop album than Labor Days, in any era.

Aesop Rock

Aesop Rock

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