From The Desk Of Aesop Rock: Alex Pardee

Following a five-year hiatus, San Francisco-via-NYC hip-hop artist Aesop Rock recently returned with his first solo album since None Shall Pass. Released by the Rhymesayers label, Skelethon is the rapper’s effort to come to terms with the death of a close friend, as well as the deterioration of several friendships and close relationships. “Death has become commonplace in my life,” he says. “The past few years was an endless period of skeletons. But, hopefully, Skelethon will help put all of this behind me. It’s like a giant purging—like finishing a chapter and preparing to jump into the next one.” Aesop will also be guest editing all week. Read our recent feature on him.

Aesop: Alex Pardee is kind. He is a Bay Area-based artist and founding member of the Zero Friends creative collective, a crew/label/store that sells artwork, tees, toys, books and more. He is also one of my absolute favorite humans. This man radiates creativity like few people I have known and demonstrates a contagious, genuine excitement for all things he loves: art, movies, people, music, etc. His eyes light up, his body language goes all haywire, and there is an unabashed love for getting psyched on cool stuff.

It’s fucking awesome. He is the kind of guy who you spend a day with and can’t wait to get home to apply that inspired energy to something of your own. Alex works non-stop. His art is precise and grotesque and adorable and strange and a million other things. It’s like dragging a deep respect for draftsmanship through a pile of teeth and rainbows.

The days I get to hang around his studio and absorb his process and ideas are times I truly cherish. I could go on forever about the merits of both his artwork and his character, but to sum it all up: You couldn’t pick a better guy to root for.

Video after the jump.