Pillbox

AB brings hip hop to Carnegie Mellon

Ian Mathias Bavitz, also known as hip hop idol Aesop Rock, pumped up the crowd last Saturday. (credit: Courtney Wittekind | Assistant News Editor) Ian Mathias Bavitz, also known as hip hop idol Aesop Rock, pumped up the crowd last Saturday. (credit: Courtney Wittekind | Assistant News Editor)

Saturday night, hip hop lyricist Aesop Rock performed at Wiegand Gym, and opening for him was a hip hop duo from the Midwest — The Cool Kids.

The Cool Kids is an alternative hip hop group consisting of two young men, Antoine “Mikey Rocks” Reed and Evan “Chuck Inglish” Ingersoll. The band took the stage and began their performance with some of their well-known songs. The audience members played their part and sang along, screaming and making the concert memorable. The Cool Kids even gave the audience a taste of the music that will be coming out with their new album, which is scheduled to be released in spring 2010. Look for The Cool Kids’ new album and hear their music on MySpace at www.myspace.com/thecoolkids.

Following a great performance, Aesop Rock took the stage and put on another fantastic show. The hip hop artist was originally born Ian Matthias Bavitz in 1976 in Long Island, N.Y., and emerged during the new wave of underground and alternative hip hop during the late 1990s and early 2000s. He is currently signed to Definitive Jux label and is a member of The Weathermen. He says that the name “Aesop” came from a character he played in a movie, and it stuck. The “rock” part came from being in so many of his rhymes.

Aesop Rock is a very unique artist and has tattoos on his forearms: The one on the left arm says “Must Not Sleep,” and the one on the right says “Must Warn Others.” He takes these lines from the 1956 sci-fi movie Invasion of the Body Snatchers and used them in his lyrics in the chorus of his song “Commencement at the Obedience Academy.”

Aesop’s lyrics are sometimes seen as complex and abstract, but the interpretation is subjective. Different styles and kinds of people showed up to hear his performance, and he captured the crowd, getting the audience swaying and bopping to his lyrics. “Even if it’s not laid out in perfect sentences — is any rap? — you’d have to be an idiot to not at least grasp a few things from these songs. Or have had no interest in pulling anything from them in the first place,” he said, commenting on his lyrical style.

Aesop Rock’s music is available for all to hear on his MySpace page at www.myspace.com/aesoprockwins along with several videos that give the fans an inside look into who he is off stage.