In 2007, while on tour supporting his album None Shall Pass, indie rapper/ producer Aesop Rock wrote a fan email to folk singer/songwriter Kimya Dawson. A few years later they reconnected during the creation of arts-and-oddities blog 900Bats, which in turn sparked the pair's collaborative musical efforts. After appearing on each other's respective recent solo records, Aesop Rock's Skelethon and Kimya Dawson's Thunder Thighs, both found more worth pursuing within the group dynamic, and The Uncluded were hatched.
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The group name The Uncluded was chosen based on an excerpt from the book Imaginationally by artist/writer Michael Bernard Loggins. Imaginationally is an illustrated dictionary of words Loggins created to describe his daily experiences and thoughts. "Unclude - verb- Keeping things you don't appreciate out of your life."
The Uncluded's debut album Hokey Fright was recorded over the course of a year using a variety of locations and devices, from voice memo recorders to fleshed out studios. Aesop and Kimya wrote, performed, and recorded the whole album, with the exception of the drums on "Delicate Cycle", which were played by James McNew of Yo La Tengo. Having both experienced some loss in recent years, conversations about mortality served as a starting point for what would eventually become an album as much about finding therapy through writing/sharing as it is about being ok with admitting fear in the face of adversity. There is a sense of self-exploration and discovery that happens during the songs, as if the two are doing the problem-solving in front of you. While much of the album maintains a serious tone, Dawson and Rock's oddball humor plays an integral part in humanizing the obstacles that can initially seem too massive to process.
Kimya Dawson is a Grammy winning, platinum selling singer songwriter most widely known for her work on the JUNO soundtrack and her former band, The Moldy Peaches. She has released 7 solo albums, including a children's album, Alphabutt. Aesop Rock (aka Ian Bavitz) is a critically acclaimed hip hop artist/producer, recognized for his dense and abstract word play. He has released six solo albums, three EPs, and a 45-minute piece of music designed for runners, commissioned by Nike. Lyrics have been published in the New York Times Best Seller Hip Hop Speaks to Children, as well as Yale University's Anthology of Rap (Nov. 2010). Aesop is also co-founder of 900bats.com, a creative resource of arts, information, and oddities.