I now have seen both halves of the Moldy Peaches perform live in concert. After an amazing opening act by Hamell on Trial, anti-folk’s resident afro queen took the stage with her fat rapper costar and it was a night filled with dark humour, sarcastic wit, and subversive subject matter. And of course the music. Dawson and “The Uncluded” Counterpart Aesop Rock don’t necessarily have the best voices in the world – rappers don’t really sing – but for them, and for the fans that doesn’t seem to matter. For anybody who was at the Fortune Sound Club last week, it was all about the performance.
Unlike many rappers, Aesop Rock isn’t loud and boisterous, isn’t decked out in a lot of bling and doesn’t try to shock anybody. He’s more Phife Dawg and GZA rather than 50 Cent or Eminem. Kimya Dawson has hair that would make Angela Davis and even Alex Cuba jealous along with an acid-tongued dry wit that, when combined with Aesop’s often sardonic lyrics makes for a hilarious night of humours and jealousies.
The Uncluded performed all the songs of their album Hokey Fright – including their 37-second epic entitled superheroes, which Aesop described as a food-off. (It is a competition to do with sandwiches after all). Not only was the audience really into Dawson and Aesop, but Dawson and Aesop were really into the audience. They were quite engaging which – especially for a club like Fortune – was refreshing. While both Aesop and Dawson are phenomenal songwriters who aren’t afraid of tackling social issues in a subversive, they don’t take themselves too seriously, and a result, the show had a nice, light feeling to it.
Both workhorses in the profession, Aesop and Dawson represent a lot of us who feel left behind or “uncluded” if you will. (See what I did there). And so, at least for a little while, they did their best to include the rest of us in their happy, silly little world. I think they succeeded.
The Uncluded’s ‘Hokey Fright’ was released in May.
RIYL: The Moldy Peaches, Antsy Pants, The Weathermen