3RDegree released their first CD ‘Human Interest Story’ in 1996. They previously had a album on cassette ‘The World In Which We Live’, a 10 song collection which set the playing field for ‘Human Interest Story’. Close fans of the band at the time have probably heard this. I‘m a new fan so I haven‘t yet. Also they added lead vocalist. George Dobbs in the summer of 1995. Along with vocals, George is also a keyboardist and bassist.
An interesting trivia, I saw a copy of this back in the late 90’s at a cd shop but passed it up. Now I wished I didn’t because this band is creatively one of the better American Prog bands to emerge in the 90’s. In fact I find them more original than bands like Spock’s Beard, which tried too hard to be a prog band. 3rdegree just lets it flow and the end result is fantastic music that sticks with you long after listening.
I feel this album needs to be listened to from start to finish. The only reason is it grabs you on the first song and never lets you go. The first two songs, the title track and “13/Mistakes” are perfect album starters. So infectious and you find yourself singing along with the title track . Oh and you need to hear this one at higher volumes, enough to annoy your neighbors. They slow things down with “Why Me” and “Locked Inside“, ballads that, in a perfect world, would have been a hits. They’re two of the band’s “crossover” songs.
Musically the band has been compared to Jellyfish, Queen, Spock’s Beard, The Beatles, and countless others. I would even add Toy Matinee and Kevin Gilbert to the list. Along with their new release, ’Narrow-Caster’, ’Human Interest Story’ have become frequent visitors to my media player.
If you enjoy melodic infectious intelligent music, then look no further than 3rdegree. They combine the best elements of complex and accessible music that will appeal to the bands I mentioned above. They even list a “Mystery Song” with credits to Todd Rundgren. I’ve been enjoying the music too much to ask the band what song it is. Anyway, this is one of those albums from the 90’s that seemed to get lost in the shuffle but now that should change. Highly recommended album and band! Check them out ASAP!
Reviewed by Ron Fuchs on Janaury 9th, 2009