Saturday, March 21, 2020

3rd Degree - All You Wanna Do? (1984, Flaming Pie)

Sorry of it seems like I've taken another sabbatical.  I've got to work on giving you more content than I have been.  These are phenomenally wack times, so I thought I'd go with something today that sort of exudes a similar WTF? quotient.  Like a lot of discs I share, there's little to no relevant details online pertaining to 3rd Degree, save for a Discogs entry and a couple Ebay listings that chalk this one up to be nothing more than synth pop.  That borders on grossly inaccurate and shortsighted.  I don't think this trio (ostensibly from Los Angeles) had much intention of skewing to a particular genre, but All You Wanna Do? radiates an undeniably pronounced, not to mention dark, energy.  

A good 50% percent of that energy resides in the drumsticks of skin-basher Thom Douglas whose savage, bongo-enhanced attack would've been enough to make John Bonham or Keith Moon wilt on a good day.  The man's fearsome, tribal-rhythmic assault permeates near every damn nook and cranny of this disc, but beyond that, a band is obviously more than just percussion, and on many songs (especially those occupying side one) frontman Jan Alan Henderson is a malestrom on the mic, channeling the intensity and fervor of such '60s counterculture belters as Edwin Starr and Barry McGuire.  There's more than a little of that Vietnam War-era urgency on All You Wanna Do?, and even if it lends a slightly dated feel to 3rd Degree it's well suited for such sociopolitical screeds as "Stop Molesting the Earth" and "Voodoo Rhythm."  Additionally we’re treated to some icy, post-punk guitar constructs on the aforementioned “Stop Molesting...” plus "Deadly Innocence," and the all instro “Solar Surf,” the most legit examples of this trio’s supposed "new wave" bona fides.  Nonetheless 3rd Degree weren’t about to give Killing Joke or Siouxsie a run for their money anytime soon.  So yeah, this one is a bit of a challenge to pinpoint, but in the era of Depeche Mode, Duran Duran, and conversely, sacred indie totems Husker Du and the Minutemen, this threesome were in a veritable league of their own.  This appears to be the band's first and final offering.

01. Put Me On Hold
02. Invisible Man
03. Voodoo Rhythm
04. Solar Surf
05. Light Year
06. Deadly Innocence
07. Stop Molesting the Earth
08. All You Wanna Do

1 comment:

Marie-Dentelle said...

Hello. Would it be possible to have the links for :

# Let's Active - Demos 1983-85
# Let's Active - Every Dog Has it's Demos (1987)

Marie-Dentelle (France)