Aesop Rock returns with “None Shall Pass”

aesop rock_chrissy piper.jpg

It’s been four long years since Aesop Rock issued his last album, 2003’s Bazooka Tooth. In the interim, he’s kept busy with an EP (2005’s Fast Cars, Danger, Fire and Knives), an installment for Nike’s +Original Run series (the recently released All Day Nike Original Run), an audio/visual project with artist Jeremy Fish (last year’s The Next Best Thing) and guest spots on several Definitive Jux and underground hip-hop joints. According to his press bio, he even completed soundtracks for two short films (though I’m having trouble finding out about that stuff).

So dude has been busy. Still, everyone’s been waiting for the album statement, particularly since Bazooka Tooth drew mixed reviews from fans and critics. So how will his sixth effort fare? All will be revealed on August 28 when None Shall Pass hits stores via Definitive Jux. The title track was recently leaked to the Internet, and hey! It’s pretty dope. That bodes well for the new album. Track listing is below.

For None Shall Pass, Aesop Rock shares production duties with Blockhead, El-P and Rob Sonic. Guests include Cage, Breezly Brewin, DJ Big Wiz and John Darnielle of the Mountain Goats. Parchman Farm, a band that features Aesop’s wife Allyson Baker, also appears on some tracks.

Just like El-P did prior to the release of his I’ll Sleep When You’re Dead, Aesop used Pitchfork as a platform to launch his None Shall Pass campaign. “It’s hard because Def Jux or me or a couple people that are in and around what I do were all critical darlings to some degree in 2000, 2001. Those were the years when this whole new era of indie rap was spawning,” he told Pitchfork. “Once that blows over, people start getting critical, obviously. You just buckle down and do what you’ve got to do and hope that people will see it for what it is. Hopefully, at the end of the day, I’ve got a bunch of records that sound a little different from each other, and hopefully they’re all a little bit progressive and stand for something. Hopefully, history will be kind to the label and think that it was a cool thing.”

Here’s the track listing:

  • 1. “Keep Off The Lawn”
  • 2. “None Shall Pass”
  • 3. “Catacomb Kids”
  • 4. “Bring Back Pluto”
  • 5. “Fumes”
  • 6. “Getaway Car” (feat. Cage & Breeze Brewin)
  • 7. “39 Thieves”
  • 8. “The Harbor is Yours”
  • 9. “Citronella”
  • 10. “Gun for the Whole Family” (feat. El-P)
  • 11. “Five Fingers”
  • 12. “No City”
  • 13. “Dark Heart News” (feat. Rob Sonic)
  • 14. “Coffee” (feat. John Darnielle)

Aesop Rock photo by Chrissy Piper.

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