Fabled Aesop Rock Plays Altar Bar; “Waywardland” Appears at New Hazlett For a Night (CPs 2/12/15)

1) After data scientist Matt Daniels measured the number of unique words used within hip hop artists’ lyrics, the results were unequivocal—Aesop Rock has the largest vocabulary in all of hip hop. Aesop’s rating not only was off the chart but also beat better-known artists like Gza and The Roots. Born Ian Matthias Bavitz, this San Francisco-based rapper boosts his word count by employing homonyms and a rapid flow. His latest album, Skelethon, was released in 2012, where it bubbled just under the Billboard top 20. Since then, he’s collaborated with Kimya Dawson as The Uncluded and with Rob Sonic and DJ Big Wiz as Hail Mary Mallon. Tonight he takes his expansive lexicon to Altar Bar. Rob Sonic, Homeboy Sandman, and DJ Abilities open. 8 p.m. 1620 Penn Ave., Strip District.

2) Pittsburgh’s New Hazlett Theater is a go-to venue for performing arts that are intriguing but defy classification. Case in point: WaywardLand, the Feb. 12 show by Jil Stifel and Ben Sota. Stifel is a dancer known for collaborating on experimental pieces with fellow artists of all kinds. Sota, artistic director of the globe-trotting Zany Umbrella Circus, is a master of aerial acrobatics and other breathtaking stunts. The two are teaming up as part of the New Hazlett’s CSA (Community Supported Art) series. 8 p.m. 6 Allegheny Square East, North Side.



3) Funnyman Bret Ernst is the next comic up at the Pittsburgh Improv and will provide a solid laugh fest through the Valentine’s Day weekend. Ernst has a strong bio with a recurring part in the Showtime TV show “Weeds,” frequent appearances on E! Network’s Chelsea Lately, and his Comedy Central Presents special in 2011 was one of the one of the top rated shows on the network that year. 8 p.m. Shows through Sunday. 166 East Bridge St.,  The Waterfront, Homestead