The Long Division

by 3RDegree

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1.
Everybody: wants a revolution/needs a new solution/ needs some evolution/needs some resolution You and your gun-totting, flag waving corporate sell-outs Bible belt simpletons quoting your founding fathers You and your God, you and your God-You and your God You’re Fooling Yourselves-that was your time-this is our time now Stop kidding around No one’s left to buy the lies you sell Stop fooling around Everybody: needs to love their country/wants to keep what they make/needs a happy family/wants lethal protection You and your tree-hugging, America-bashing peaceniks Urban elitists, reinventing what’s good and pure Media whores, settling old scores & starting class wars You’re fooling yourself if you can’t find a way to agree to disagree and you’re fooling yourself if you don’t look across the aisle and see humanity Can you prove to your- self as you spew out your filth as you demonize, patron- ize, polarize with your every word Are you willing to risk leading us all off the cliff ‘cause even now, I can see the mountain... Everybody: needs a constitution/wants to leave the party needs to think for themselves/needs to get their fair shake You with delusions of political domination You with at- tack ads full of character assassination selling us out without a doubt-it’s what you’re about Fool yourself But you ain’t fooling me-so many agree You can fool yourself
2.
Drawing up lines in the sand to be crossed and the time from the sand is the time that we’ve lost and we’ll never get back But the patterns from sand reveal themselves after the gravity I’ve got an exit strategy but it’s flawed ‘cause the one I’ve got has a certain company that when deployed is giving second thoughts but now I’m caught So now the tables turn around and I’m forced to reveal my strategy but in defense you counter and we go round and round We control our own dest- iny-extraordinary forces then we are lost and found We planted a camp on solid rock but we never once gave a pause for thought for the ambush above from the beautiful hills-but beauty has a way of fooling you... Drawing lines in the sand to be cros- sed
3.
i. Prelude To A Bailout (instrumental) ii. Give Them What They Want The future’s jeopardized-soon there will be no place for our kind Presently terrified faced with the horrors of a biblical blight Too late to stock, lock & barrel, board- ed up and feeling the weight Deflated dollar-white collar barbarians are banging at the gate Just Give Them What They Wanted-Just Give Them What They Want... Heavily invested in the very things that soon will have us all pinned It’s blowing in the wind It’s time to own it like it was your own sin Who needs a handout? Trickle-down I’ve got my doubts not much of it can Not gonna hold my breath unless they raise the price of oxy- gen Another Ponzi scam-another housing bubble bursting at the seams Now look who’s getting slammed-it’s you and me and the American Dream Don’t want the layoffs but I don’t want the pay-offs to the men in the suits And where we’re headed I have dreaded ‘cause nobody has the balls or a clue Just Give Them What They Wanted Just Give Them What They Want
4.
Arrived here at Dulles with the best of intentions The memo this morning-I read it so well I highlight the talking points abound-mine these words for the profound A town car and a green room-then we mic up and we fume...I hold my ground as they hold theirs The blinking light there that says “on air” goes off as I’m escorted out the door I’ve got that fix that they know I adore The same goes for tomorrow resembling today-allowing for a good night’s sleep I’ll be so ready for this play This dance we do entre nous And assuming these ratings hold I’ve always got a job to do These are the incoherent ramblings of a talking head I’ve got a fervent feeling furnace burning fiery red Soon I’ll be lighting up a nation with words like: Too big to fail Market-based solutions Let’s take our country back in this defining moment In opposition it’s so liberating blaming the man on top When we’re in power they’re a nuisance I’ve got no use for their excuses Like a lawyer I can argue from either place and it’s an art form to put you back right back in your case Comfortably familiar with all the faces Everyday we put each other through the paces Just a turn of a phrase and we’re off to the races and like a virulent strain we maintain our stasis Perfect Storm Wall Street versus Main Street Outside the box Everyday Americans My parents so proud screaming aloud as I walked through the corridor Now with a voice so loud I stand out from the crowd-a talented lingual whore Poly-sci what good have you done? Polly want a crack at this one A new chance to spin some more “you ought to be ashamed of yourself” -and pretty soon this act is over Then we’re all out for drinks and dinner-these fat cats aren’t getting any thin- ner Like fish in a barrel it ain’t no hassle and the pay is good-when I deliver the dazzle! Conduct unbecoming we’re so far from shunning one another so we hammer away at this passion play day after day And assuming these ratings hold I’ve got a job that always pays The fact of the matter is it is what it is what it is...At the end of the day we can certainly all agree that the working American family gives 110% Post 9-11
5.
They lay destitute-a beauty in their pain We are the ones to follow Alleluia The fake institutes handing out the cures That is the pill we swallow Alleluia We’re all prostitutes hawking out our souls Greed is the word we follow Alleluia
6.
You are a work of art-the rarest find this man has seen-quite possibly a treasure and I’m you’re work of art-your favorite work in progress to see the light of day and it’s right on display The exhibitions begun The attention to detail: extraordinary And now since you’ve painted me I will try to paint you-make some symmetry Hail to the skill-the patterns used in this piece-the ongoing themes in this work of art What are these works of art worth when apart? Nothing much it seems they’re hopelessly together and it is your work of art that people come to see-it’s me once empty now filled to the brim
7.
Televised 06:52
In this endless thirst we go from first to worst and get lost in the mud and fall down with a thud At this point we feel “why not sign the deal” and give up privacy and give up what is me And when it’s not enough and you can’t fill your cup-this boring humdrum life with an average looking wife The shiny things we love beneath the flashing bulbs They have their steely hold but always leave you cold Thanks for sharing that with us Your divorce has been televised Your intercourse has been televised You’re ratings gold You have been sold Your life isn’t yours See dotted line To be sure when you’re televised Par for the course you will be despised-the cannon fodder of checkout lines This life isn’t real You knew the deal And when the novelty has worn off all its sheen and when the crowd’s moved on and you’re on your way down so you think you’ll adjust to a life without remorse You paid a price to find attention spans are short Thanks for sharing that with us Every vice has been televised Your weeping eyes they’ve been televised Where have they gone? And when will they wonder where you’ve gone? Where are they now? Remember them? Where have they gone? Where will you be? Re-sign your deal Can’t change your mind
8.
9.
I’m sure this happens all the time and that it’s on so many minds yet they refuse to talk about it Only a glimpse of an emotion or a sickness of the soul Some twisted reasoning misleads to spread its roots just like a weed to saturate the canvas of our world Man’s reach exceeds the grasp around the throats of those he must compel That deciding moment should he take his rightful place will bathe in all his glory of accomplishment and grace You only want your share of what is good in this god-blessed world Always wanting Deep down you know it doesn’t work that way-you’ve got to take it all Always wanting more Break no commandment that is written down but if it isn’t it’s anybody’s game when the spirit of the law is missing You’ll need a good excuse: just say that you were on a mission and hope your prayers are not ignored I don’t want your handouts I don’t want your hand-me-downs I want what’s mine
10.
All that is and all that was is meaningless And every little bruise you’ve suffered can never reach across the universe And the darkness has a way of reaching out to us Smothers us but softly The wisdom we need is lost before we’ve begun And it won’t be long before this world be- comes undone Our world becomes undone Reason don’t enter in It may be a blessing but not a curse When everything you’re holding onto keeps you afraid I ask you to be brave The future is all we’ve got It’s all that we need I wouldn’t ask you to give up one thing you still believe But what do you still believe? Do you still believe in me?

about

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“You’re Fooling Yourselves!”, wails 3RDegree lead singer/keyboardist George Dobbs on the band’s lead-off single from the new CD THE LONG DIVISION-their first since 2008. This song-as well as a few others on the first half of the album-flesh out the band’s 2012 political treatise: that America’s political parties (and probably those in other countries) have long divided it’s populous on the basis of color, salary, sex, age and much else, have played on their fears, and have used their accumulated powers to build up largesse to keep their supporters in the fold. Ok, it’s not always that heavy, but the album was penned in the shadow of the 2008 economic collapse that was happening right as 3RDegree were releasing their first album in 12 years: NARROW-CASTER. While that third album was a combination of fresh songs and resurrected ideas from the period just before the band’s original breakup in 1997, THE LONG DIVISION is in the shared vintage of Tea Parties, Occupy Movements, shovel-ready jobs and banks and car companies “too big to fail”.
As with the last album, Los Angeles-based Pat Kliesch (guitarist/backing vocalist) would share ideas back and forth with his two New Jersey band mates: band leader Robert James Pashman (bassist/keyboardist /backing vocalist), and the aforementioned Dobbs. Using online tools to share and with all three proficient with digital audio workstations such as ProTools, demos were created and shared with new band mates Eric Pseja (guitarist/backing vocalist who had been working with the band since their 2007 The Reunion Concerts DVD/Blu-ray) and Aaron Nobel (drummer who was added just in time for the Live At ProgDay 2009 DVD/Blu-ray-replacing the departed Rob Durham) before going into the studio to record the foundation drum tracks. Songs like the Dobbs-penned “The Socio-Economic Petri Dish” and “Memetic Pandemic” would be shared with North Carolina’s ProgDay audience in their embryonic states, but all else except the live favorite “A Work Of Art” featuring Pashman on piano with Dobbs singing beside him-and the only track resurrected from the 90’s incarnation of the band-would be arranged later on.
After the big splash in small progressive rock ponds worldwide that NARROW-CASTER had made throughout 2009 with the Dutch Progressive Rock Page (DPRP.net) reveling: “It’s not often an album as refreshing as this comes along, and we should treasure it when it does...an album that demands repeated spins, and rewards every listen with some new revelation”, 3RDegree tried writing/demoing and performing occasional shows in Brooklyn (alongside Phideaux), Connecticut’s Marprog (with Holding Pattern), outside Washington D.C and Chapel Hill, North Carolina’s ProgDay (with Ozric Tentacles), but found that doing live shows once in a while was really slowing down the process of getting another studio album together. Stretching things even further, 3RDegree found that they were working on some tracks with another theme that weren’t going to work in this collection. Good news though: perhaps the wait for a fifth album will be a shorter one than ever before!
THE LONG DIVISION carries on the mission statement created 20 years earlier by Pashman and Kliesch in the infancy of the band when they would try mixing accessible melodies with the conventions of progressive rock to a pre-internet, cover-band loving New Jersey: no need to wax poetic here. Releasing a debut cassette THE WORLD IN WHICH WE LIVE in 1993 (with Pashman on lead vocals), 3RDegree then decided to step up their game in 1995, adding a world class lead vocalist in George Dobbs and releasing their first CD-1996’s HUMAN INTEREST STORY. After playing many live shows in the NYC area gaining little traction, the band hung it up, leaving much of a nascent NARROW-CASTER sitting on the cutting room floor. Dobbs would continue musical endeavors including solo albums, Pashman and Kliesch would work on projects together and a solo album each apart, but talk of 3RDegree was couched in the past tense until Pashman would make a video collection in 2005, putting together all the band’s music videos and performances onto DVD and arranging demo cassettes onto CDs. Discussion of the songs left behind bubbled under throughout that year until all original members met at a NYC bar after Christmas where it was agreed upon that the band would record again.
So while NARROW-CASTER felt more like a “comeback” album, THE LONG DIVISION is possibly a more impressive feat for the band: a fresh helping of tracks illustrating the band’s 20 year old formula need not be tinkered with for any perceived audiences’ expectations.

credits

released September 4, 2012

Mixed by Angelo Panetta except "You're Fooling Yourselves" mixed by Brett Kull
Mastered by Dennis Drake
Produced by Robert James Pashman, George Dobbs & Pat Kliesch

George Dobbs-lead vocals, keyboards
Robert James Pashman-bass, keyboards, backing vocals
Pat Kliesch-guitar, backing vocals
Aaron Nobel-drums, percussion
Eric Pseja-guitar, backing vocals

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3RDegree New Jersey

We write & record hook-laden progressive rock tunes, have played in 7 countries, put out 6 albums and have been together 30 years.

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