Iconic New York-born, San Francisco-based rapper and producer, Aesop Rock, is joining forces with Rhymesayers to release his sixth studio album, Skelethon, on July 10th 2012. Since the release of None Shall Pass in 2007, we've seen Aesop Rock touring the world, launching online arts outlet, 900bats.com, and collaborating on LPs with Felt, Hail Mary Mallon, the Uncluded and more. Skelethon not only sees the rapper back waxing poetically on his own but also marks his first wholly self-produced effort. While the sounds are familiar, we see Aesop venturing in some exciting new directions with guest appearances from indie rock archetype, Kimya Dawson, as well as Allyson Baker of Dirty Ghosts, Hanni El Khatib, Nicky Fleming-Yaryan, Rob Sonic, DJ Big Wiz and the Grimace Federation. Aesop's new album follows in the wake of several deep personal losses and highlights subject matter that deals with the sometimes-futile ways people try to cope with serious issues. The cover art comes from Barcelona-based painter Aryz. Skelethon is set to be both a showpiece for his illustrious career and a serious payoff for his droves of ever-patient loyal fans.
Ask ten different people in the know what they think about Rob Sonic, and you may very well get ten distinct and very interesting answers, though chances are the things they'll all agree on a few things, like "amazing production" or "unbelievable lyrics". Not a bad consensus. What we at Def Jux have known for a few years now, the rest of the music community is about to get their first real taste of, courtesy of Mr. Sonic himself and his seriously accomplished debut album, Telicatessen. We'll throw all the hackneyed cliché's at this one - 'tour de force', 'jaw-dropping', 'work of art', 'virtuoso performance', 'panoply of artistic accomplishment'- and you know what, they all kind of stick. Now that we've set unrealistic expectations for you, not to mention Rob, throw it all away and hear this album for what it really is: one man's musical journey through his mind, his experience and his reality of living in this day and age. It's a menu of musical exploration, with lyrics that will alternately tickle and confuse you ("what the fuck did he just say?") and beats that at times might just snap your neck, having gotten you so vigorously open. A masterpiece of focused abstraction, held tightly together by a commanding and confident flow, Telicatessen was completely self-produced using a variety of gear, both vintage and tech (ARP Odyssey, Little Brother, Mini Moog, Yamaha SK-20, Roland Juno 106, Fender Rhodes Piano Bass, Korg MS-2000, Akai MPC 2000 XL plus Technics 1200's courtesy of DJ's Big Wiz and Fred Ones), Rob Sonic has delivered one of the most accomplished independent hip hop albums of the year, one that deepens and stretches the tradition simultaneously.
Originally from the Washington D.C. area, Rob has been devoted to music since he was a kid, maintaining a deep connection to it in multiple forms (The Beatles, The Stones, Melle Mel, Run DMC, Kraftwerk, The Soul Sonic Force, The Talking Heads, Zeppelin, BDP, Public Enemy, Muddy Waters, UltraMangnetic MC's, The Clash, Devo, Goblin, David Bowie, EPMD). He developed his expressive abilities through grinding for 10 + years in New York City, living life in a way unique to the New York experience – hard fought, hard luck, high stress and no money tempered by huge dreams. In 2000, Rob gained critical acclaim as the front man of the group Sonic Sum, who's album The Sanity Annex won rave reviews in the U.S., Europe and Japan, with SPIN magazine voting it the "2nd Best Album of the Year that No One Heard". Kudos rolled in from publications such as The Source, The Wire, XXL, NME, Urb (Next 100), and CMJ. Word got around and soon came offers from artists like DJ Krush and Funkstorung to get down on their albums, a collaboration with Slug (Atmosphere) and Mike Ladd, plus shout outs from Radiohead, Bobbito Garcia, Autechre and others. Rob also happened to share the same management as Def Jux honcho El-P, and a friendship, as well as mutual artistic respect, formed. In 2003, Rob signed with the label, asking only for the opportunity to make a record with his heart, mind and soul, hence, Telicatessen. And it's all we could have ever asked for.
Dark Time Sunshine
Dark Time Sunshine is the new latest project of Cape Cowen, aka Onry Ozzborn of Greyskul and oldominion, with Chicago producer Zavala. The duo have so far released two albums, both on Fake Four, Inc., the free mp3 album BELIEVEYOUME, and this years Vessel which features appearances by Aesop Rock, P.O.S., Solillaquists of Sound, Qwel, Champagne Champagne and more.
-Vessel held the #2 position on the CMJ charts for 2 consecutive weeks.
-Played 4 showcases at this year's SXSW
-Played this years Soundset Festival, were joined on stage with P.O.S. and Awol One
-Extensive nationwide touring in support of Awol One, Sole and the Skyrider Band, Pigeon John and DJ Abilities