Underground rapper and hip-hop producer Aesop Rock will be the latest artist contributing to the Nike+iPod ecosystem with the release of his new Nike+ Original Run mix, available this Tuesday, February 13 on the iTunes Store. You can hear a preview of the new Nike mix on his MySpace page. Aesop Rock is the third artist to be tapped for the Nike+ Original Run series — 45-minute continuous music mixes designed especially for running — following both LCD Soundsystem [iTunes link] and The Crystal Method [iTunes link].
Aesop Rock posted this message about the project:
i was asked to do a 45 minute long (mostly) intrumental song for nike’s ‘original run’ series. i wouldnt call it my first intrumental album as i kind of approached it differently then i would a true inst album, but it is primarily intrumental, with some areas of vocals. this project has lots of live intrumentation, bass, guitars, keys, etc., and really has a consistently changing sound. there were a couple rules to follow, as i kinda had to make something that was as ‘functional’ as it was kinda cool to listen to. it really runs the gamut from super light and almost ambient to pretty dark and tuff, to eerie, to funky, etc etc. I really got to try things i dont think i would have ever tried elsewhere on this thing. dj big wiz does cuts throughout. allyson baker (former parchman farm member) plays guitar a lot. also, the music will come with a ‘digital booklet’ featuring 6 photos by the lovely and talented chrissy piper. should be available thru itunes feb 13th if youre interested. heres a snippet from the press release that went out:
AESOP ROCK COMMISSIONED FOR NIKE + ORIGINAL RUN SERIES!
Joining the ranks of renowned artists The Crystal Method and LCD Soundsystem, MC/Producer Aesop Rock has joined forces with Nike to release an original composition in the third installment of the “Nike + Orignal Run” series, available exclusively in the Nike Sport Music store on iTunes. All Day: Nike + Original Run, a 45-minute continuous mix, was created specifically with runners in mind and reflects Aesop Rock’s distinct and unique style. “I wanted to create something that evolved enough that the sound was constantly fresh and attractive, as if the runner were moving through a set of differing cities or landscapes.”
I have to say that this is great news. Not only do I love to see Nike turning to artists who may not get the recognition they deserve in the mainstream music world, but this addition to the series should be a welcome change for people (like me) who get bored with continuous electronic dance mixes after about fifteen minutes.
I first heard Aesop Rock in a DJ Z-Trip mix several years ago and have been a big fan ever since. His trademark rapid-fire lyrics and and verbal gymnastics, combined with his increasingly experimental beats, can leave a listener feeling a little dizzy at first, but always seem to reveal something new with each listen. For example, his song The Greatest Pac-Man Victory In History [iTunes link] contains a section made up entirely of words beginning with L, S, and D, in that order. I’ve heard the song a dozen times or so and never picked up on that (until I read it on Wikipedia). I have to admit that I’ve always considered his music a little complex and dense to add to any of my running mixes, so it’ll be interesting to see what he comes up with for this Nike-sponsored project. The preview is encouraging. I’ll be sure post a review as soon as I’ve heard it.