Eyedea & Abilities + Aesop Rock Review In Today's Boston Herald
Hip-hop wordsmiths shine
Friday, September 7, 2001
EYEDEA & ABILITIES
``First Born'' (Rhymesayers)
``Labor Days'' (Def Jux)
Three years ago, these recordings would have been circulated among fans who met in hip-hop chat rooms online. Things are different now. Densely packed, intellectual rap as perfected by New York's Aesop Rock and Minnesota's Eyedea are enjoyed by thousands instead of hundreds. Progress!
Aesop Rock is an incredibly talented wordsmith. His taut, hypnotic verses are intricate and spoken so quickly that only his most devoted fans will digest every word. But when he simplifies a bit and tells stories, he satisfies from all angles.
Eyedea - bolstered by Abilities' wide-ranging production and DJ skills - makes things easier, but far from simple. ``First Born'' is a left-of-center gem, full of philosophical musings and true life tales that tend toward the downbeat. That won't prevent listeners from taking pleasure in his talent. (Aesop Rock and Eyedea perform with the Who Killed the Robots? Tour tonight at the Middle East, Cambridge.)