First Look: Rhythm Tee by Black Diamond

Quick drying and soft on the skin, the Rhythm Tee from Black Diamond is a welcome running companion.

Black Diamond Rhythm Tee
57% nylon, 43% wool

Price: $75
Best Features: Lightweight, wicking ability and comfort.
Room for Improvement: May run slightly large.

The wool boom of several years ago has resulted in a plethora of T-shirts touted not to stink up (as quickly as synthetics), wick moisture and feel good next to the skin. So, how does a new entry into this saturated market stand out?

With the Rhythm Tee, it’s all about the specially woven NuYarn merino wool, which, says BD, makes it much lighter, dry five times faster and 35% stretchier than any other merino shirt on the market. Certainly, those claims are tough to verify.

However, using it as a baselayer on winter ski-mountaineering and trail-running missions, I can attest to the shirt’s light, airy feel and comfort on the skin. What stood out for me over my other wool T’s was the Rhythm’s efficient wicking and quick-drying properties.

Normally a standard size medium, I found the shirt fit on the loose side, not as athletic as I prefer, especially underneath another baselayer. I did, however, find myself grabbing for the Rhythm Tee when I reached into my drawer (or off the floor even after a day or two wear). On most of my outings these days, I choose wool for my baselayer, as it indeed doesn’t stink up nearly as much as synthetics and, to me, feels nicer next to the skin.

—Mike Benge is the Editor of Trail Runner magazine.