The shears came out - real beauty parlor shears - when Aesop Rock introduced his song "Racing Stripes" at the Union Transfer.
The underground rapper pulled a woman from the audience to brave an impromptu haircut while he rapped the less-than-reassuring refrain, "Dude, it'll grow back."
Aes didn't actually wield the clippers. He left that duty to opening band hip-hop duo Dark Time Sunshine, introducing them as "two of the best dudes and worst barbers I know."
That song, like much of his set, comes from Skelethon, Aes' first solo album in five years. In the interim, he assembled the trio Hail Mary Mallon with fellow emcee Rob Sonic and DJ Big Wiz, both of whom joined him onstage Saturday. Wiz's crisp scratching and ricocheting beats kept an electric crackle throughout the 90-minute set, supporting Aes' typically knotty rhymes as he stalked back and forth across the stage with a wiry, spider-like gait.