On Integrated Tech Solutions-a concept album about an organization offering "lifestyle- and industry-specific applications designed to curate a desired multi-experience"-Aesop Rock wields insidious corporatespeak as a tool to pry the parasitic business culture away from the parts of life that truly matter, while picking apart the charlatan language. On "Mindful Solutionism," as the wheel evolves seamlessly into modern agriculture-and then into atomic bombs, cigarettes, and surveillance cameras, Aes sums the spiral up in just a few words: "We cannot be trusted with the stuff that we come up with." The album sounds like the past and future at once.
Largely self-produced, Integrated Tech Solutions catches Aesop Rock at his leanest and most innovative, leveraging "Solutionism"'s careening bounce against the wistful "By the River" or the slow creep of "Salt and Pepper Squid." The effect is a record that sounds itself like an organism growing, mutating, hurtling toward profitability-and then destruction. As fans have come to expect though, Aesop is cuttingly funny and slyly profound at once. "I've been doing laps of the lost worlds," he raps on "All City Nerve Map," sounding at once wearied and reinvigorated. "I can draw a map to the raw nerve."