I’m hesitant to file Aesop Rock under “rap” because I’ve learned that you’re statistically less likely to listen to it if I do (shame on you). That said, he does rap…but his music draws on influences ranging from art pop to beatnik jazz to first-wave electro and so on. Just depends at what moment you catch him. The only constant is Aesop’s dizzying flow and fertile narratives.
These two tracks will give you a taste of how his work has evolved over time: “Basic Cable” comes from his first label-released album and “None Shall Pass” is the single from his brand-new album. However, if you’re looking to start your Aesop Rock collection, I still recommend 2001’s Labor Days.