Third Sight
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Third Sight

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Music

The best kept secret in music

Press


"... the sound of a lyrical giant ... accompanied by some of the most uncompromising beats this side of Company Flow's"

"'Symbionese Liberation Album' is a shining example of how to properly execute a hardcore Hip-Hop sound mission. Jihad's intense, multi-layered rhymes hark back to the days of Rakim and Kool Keith, when new meanings could still be found within a verse even after you'd heard it for the tenth time. ... It's the sound of a lyrical giant stomping through a concrete jungle full of verbal midgets, accompanied by some of the most uncompromising beats this side of Company Flow's 'Funcrusher Plus.'" - Blues & Soul (UK)


"... a perfectly executed mixture of intelligence, depth, darkness and beats"

"This album is a perfectly executed mixture of intelligence, depth, darkness and beats. ... complete with he-man references and so many beat styles and cuts that each song is almost it's own album. You can tell time, patience and skill were put into the making of this record and it could only be done by people with amazing skills who work together so well it feels like you're listening in on the best conversation ever. ... On this album you can say each song could turn into it's own genre, that's how much they break away and evolve. ... Buy it, sit down and hear it once, and then really pay attention the second time. You'll find yourself listening to this over and over again because it grows on you even more with each listen." - Indie Workshop


"... relentlessly d-o-p-e"

"Third Sight is the heavy, solid kid striding over from the back, that you see coming from fifty feet away but are too paralyzed by fear to avoid. Plodding, never awkward, slow but relentlessly d-o-p-e. And this kid has a wicked right hook." - PopMatters


"[Symbionese Liberation Album will] resonat[e] in your head for years to come"

Rating: 9/10 = "Epic"

"Funk-riddled and gritty, Third Sight's return long player cannot help but remind independent hip-hop listeners what ingredients are necessary for a great album: dope beats, ill lyrics and passion for the art. The perfect matching of Jihad's vocals and D-Styles' production and cuts will have this album resonating in your head for years to come. D-Styles' skillful scratch phrasing on the hooks is a welcome return to the sounds of the early '90s while Jihad comes through with heavy lyrical wordplay and tempo changes. Combined, they weave dark, unapologetic audio tapestries, encompassing listeners under their musical cloak. You need this." - Synthesis


"you need this to remind yourself of what hip hop is capable of."

"Third Sight return for their second album, 7 years since the now classic ‘The Golden Shower Hour’ – and like fine wine time has only made them better. Once more Dufunk and D-Styles provide the beats for Jihad to deliver tongue twisting, challenging, funny and incisive rhymes. The formula is simple yet effective – the beats are dark, gritty, even perverse at times and more headnodding than the majority of what passes for hip hop these days. You can’t mess a good recipe and Third Sight are proof of that with beats, rhymes and cuts that not only compliment each other perfectly but also stand on their own without shame. D-Styles’ cutting is the perfect answer to Jihad’s rhyming patterns, filling the choruses and leaving you wondering just how the hell did he get so funky? While he talks with his hands, Jihad’s rhymes are as poetic as they are raw touching on subjects ranging from politics, society, the state of pop music to disturbing sexual habits. The alchemy between the trio is evident throughout, and with a good dose of talented guests including Ricci Rucker, MF Grimm, Azeem, Rhettmatic and more this firmly stands as the first indispensable release of the year. Whether you’re new to them or not you need this to remind yourself of what hip hop is capable of." - ATM Magazine


"the first indispensable release of the year"

"7 years after they dropped the seminal 'The Golden Shower Hour' LP, and a few singles later, Third Sight return once more with an album that oozes style and packs more punch then a bouncer at a night club. 'Symbionese Liberation Album' sees D-Styles and Dufunk team up on production while Jihad once more steps to the mic and delivers some of the nastiest and funkiest tongue twisting raps of the last few years. ...

The production is dark, gritty and at times as sadistic as the rhymes – showing its influence from classic, hard hitting productions like those of the Bomb Squad, and yet managing to shine all on its own. D-Styles and Dufunk keep it simple and minimal for the most part and still manage to make your head nod like your life depends on it. Slow, tentalising beats draw you in and leave you open for Jihad’s lyrical arithmetic, which is amongst the finest today. Flipping through a wide variety of subjects, from society to the current state of the music scene to down right disturbing sexual habits, his flow never falters and adheres to every single beat as if it was a long lost relative. It's poetic as much as it's raw.

The classic 'Will I Get Shot by a Dope Fiend?,' with its slow, minimal beat and slap bass, gets a fine revamp with the addition of MF Grimm whose verse matches those of Jihad perfectly. The posse cut 'Rip Mics in Half,' which features the remaining vocalists, is another highlight while ‘'Hypothermia,' 'Nine in My Pocket' and the Ricci Rucker produced 'The People vs The Fake,' just to name a few, all put to shame the majority of hip hop made today.

Yet it’s not just the beats and rhymes that make this new Third Sight offering so tasty, it’s also the vinyl additions of D-Styles, who can make sick beats but even sicker cuts. And he shines equally on here, as he’s given the room to deliver some of the funkiest and most on points cuts on a hip hop record for god knows how long. Utilising the 'classic' MC and DJ formula that gave us so many timeless records, D-Styles delivers all the choruses on the album, accurately cutting up lyrics and sentences that show why he is one of the finest scratchers today.

The alchemy between the group is undeniable, and shines throughout. It seems effortless for the most part, and manages to remind you why hip hop can be such a powerful musical medium. It’s just a shame there aren’t more like them around these days. For all these reasons, and a few more, 'Symbionese Liberation Album' is the first indispensable release of the year. Whether you’re a fan or first time listener, you need this." - ukhh.com


"the thinking person's hip hop crew"

"...traverses the rare perimeter that includes street smarts with an intellectual bent. ... The thinking person's hip hop crew." - 3D World


"No need for punchlines, because every line punches."

"Their first release The Golden Shower Hour was an instant classic. ... The way these three gentlemen weave their skills together so effortlessly is a joy to behold. They don't have to make songs about bullsh*t because they're just simply too smart for that.

With D-Styles and Dufunk crafting dark, minimal, mysterious beats combined with Jihad imprinting his masterful flow all over the album, this is one of the best DJ/MC albums in a long time. Jihad swiftly moves through disses, issues of drugs, tooth decay, alcohol, and virgins, like one big piece of Swiss cheese. He has one of the most consistent, free-flowing, effortless flows I have ever heard. No need for punchlines, because every line punches. Non-stop, tight lyricism that streams like a waterfall." - Soundslam


"subtle brilliance"

"'Symbionese Liberation Album' ... provides subtle brilliance, both musically and lyrically." - Daily Nebraskan


"one of the finest US rap groups"

"Even though they dropped their first album nearly 8 years ago, Third Sight are still considered as one of the finest US rap groups by many fans around the world. The gap between their first, and now classic, LP (The Golden Shower Hour) and the recently released Symbionese Liberation Album doesn't seem to have dented said fanbase or their reputation a bit either. Kinda like fine wine really, it gets better with age. ... Third Sight are slowly but surely stamping their print all over 2006 with a new LP that's proving successful with fans and press and a recent Japanese tour, hopefully soon to be followed by their first European appearance as a collective." - Spin Science


Discography

THIRD SIGHT

2006 - Symbionese Liberation Album - CMJ Top 20 Hip Hop for 8 consecutive weeks (including 4 weeks in the Top 10), reached the Top 5 at Earshot, and continues to receive airplay on non-commercial radio, streaming internet sites, podcasts and XM satellite radio specialty shows. Artist of the week at KTXT in Texas ("KTXT wishes more hip-hop was like this ... The unbelievable lyrics, delivery and beats hark back to rappers like Rakim and Kool Keith, while the combination of the album's elements are nothing but innovative.")

2002 - Zodiac Killer 12" - played on a variety of college and internet radio stations

2001 - MDK EP - played on a variety of college and internet radio stations and podcasts

1998 - The Golden Shower Hour - played on a variety of college and internet radio stations and podcasts

1996 - Rhymes Like a Scientist 12" - played on a variety of college radio stations and internet radio stations and podcasts

NOTABLE GUEST APPEARANCES / SIDE PROJECTS

2006 - Roughneck Jihad on Kool Keith's Project Polaroid (Threshold Recordings)

2005 - D-Styles on Busdriver's "Fear of a Black Tangent" (Big Dada / Mush) and "Avantcore" (Mush)

2005 - Roughneck Jihad and D-Styles on Insomniac's "Polygonal Planet" (Soothsay Records)

2005 - Roughneck Jihad and D-Styles on Ricci Rucker's "Like a Box of Chocolates" (Epitome of Fresh)

2003 - D-Styles on Kid Koala's "Some of My Best Friends Are DJ's" (Ninja Tune)

2003 - D-Styles on Ricci Rucker & Mike Boo's "Scetchbook - An Introduction To Scratch Music" (Sound in Color)

2002 - D-Styles "Phantazmagorea" (Beat Junkie Sound)

1998 - D-Styles on DJ Q-Bert's "Wave Twisters" (Galactic Butt Hair Records)

1997 - D-Styles on Rasco's "Time Waits for No Man" and "The Unassisted" (Stones Throw)

1997 - Roughneck Jihad on Sacred Hoop's "Retired" (Miasmatic Recordings)

Photos

Feeling a bit camera shy

Bio

Emcee Roughneck Jihad and producer/DJ Dufunk formed Third Sight in the Bay Area of northern California around 1992, until the hip hop gods stepped in to link Jihad and DJ D-Styles (of the former Invisbl Skratch Piklz). “It has always been a real emphasis of mine to have the DJ totally incorporated,” Jihad recalls. “Like back in the ‘80s, the DJ’s name came first. I’ve never been on an emcee ego trip, and I think it’s a travesty that the DJ doesn’t get incorporated more largely into hip hop in its current state.” D-Styles, meanwhile, had been banging on drum machines since 1988. While he is best known for his ridiculous scratching talent, he has long sought to find equilibrium between the scratching and production sides.

Between then and now, Third Sight has released two singles, an EP and a full length LP (Rhymes Like a Scientist b/w Ballsacks 12" single; Zodiac Killer b/w Will I Get Shot by a Dope Fiend? 12" single; the MDK EP and The Golden Shower Hour LP), all of which have been met with critical acclaim, non-commercial radio airplay and fan devotion. These out-of-print releases, all of which feature tricky lyrical wordplay by Jihad and mind-boggling scratching by D-Styles, are hunted down by fans the world over.

Now on their second full-length, titled Symbionese Liberation Album, Third Sight is still finding balance in all their work, recalling the chemistry of the great DJ/emcee combos of the golden era of hip hop. “I look for someone who knows how to complement the song,” notes D-Styles. “I can only do so much with the beat, so I leave it open for Jihad to paint the rest of the picture.” Jihad, meanwhile, found in D-Styles a musical partner with the same reverence for that old style template where the DJ is cutting for the chorus and where the emcee is striving to be the best that he possibly can be.

But don’t mistake their great chemistry for quick and easy results. While D takes his time to make sure the beats are proper, Jihad carries himself as an emcee’s emcee and as one who takes great pride in having the strongest and most meaningful lyrics possible. He’s not just a braggadocious rapper, he’s not just a storyteller, and he’s not just a freestyle cipher dweller. He is all of those things. His diverse interests and passion for knowledge manifest through his lyrics, as he sometimes finds himself deep in research if he’s writing about a subject he feels he needs more education on. As he puts it, “I want to make it so when you’re listening to the story, you can visualize what’s taking place in your mind’s eye.”

The product of what he calls “taking the Good Times family and plopping them down in the middle of the suburbs,” Jihad spent much of his formative and adolescent years facing poverty and rampant drug abuse, which eventually claimed the lives of his mother, grandmother, grandfather, and two aunts. “I came from this niche experience where you have all this crazy shit going on in this one house on a cul-de-sac where everything else is normal. My life was always going 100mph. I saw a lot of crazy shit, and as a result, I talk about a lot of crazy shit. I vent a lot of my frustrations about my childhood and adolescence as well as about the current state of hip hop through my music. So it’s a real catharsis for me.”

Musically, D-Styles’ tracks reflect Jihad’s attitude and subject matter. D-Styles notes, “We’ve always been fans of angry, aggressive music—the Public Enemy stuff—but that’s not the only stuff we’re into.” Despite a lot of creative back-and-forth, the group has seldom, if ever, had a creative difference because they’re so close in ideology. They give each other the space and freedom to take their respective artforms to the next level.

The result of that freedom and chemistry is their latest offering, the Symbionese Liberation Album. The title isn’t just a nod to the Patty Hearst kidnappers—though when the SLA demanded a food giveaway in the Bay Area as ransom for Hearst, Jihad’s mom managed to snag a turkey before the scene turned ugly. Mostly, Jihad wanted the title of the album to raise awareness of the pseudo-revolutionary group and the implications of its racial makeup and social class divide. Despite the misguided nature of most of the Symbionese Liberation Army’s actions, some of which Hearst participated in, Jihad hopes that some listeners will take a closer look at the fallout from the SLA’s illegal activities. Against the backdrop of a controversy about whether or not the wealthy heiress was actually brainwashed or coerced by the SLA as she later claimed, Hearst’s seven year prison sentence was commuted by President Carter and she was eventually pardoned by President Clinton, while the other SLA members either met a quite gruesome ending or spent many years in prison.

Musically, the album is an exercise in dark, aggressive minimalism. D-Styles’ beats churn with molten energy and provide Jihad with a stark backdrop for his unpredic