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Storytelling comes in many forms. When we hear that phrase, what we probably think of is a simple narrative, usually told from an outside third person perspective. The phrase “story-song” typically brings to mind country songs like “El Paso” or “The Coward of the County”, which are typical third person narratives. However, I’ve always found that first person storytelling is extremely effective, especially inside the idiom of hip hop. In this genre, personal experience is often the greatest inspiration, so it makes sense for a rapper to tell his own story, which is exactly what Theory Hazit seems to be doing on Thr3e. Songs like “I Need You More Than Ever”, “Angel pt 2”, “For Lack of a Better Word” and “Find Me” seem to all come from a very personal place, and find Theory painting different portions of a fascinating self portrait. A big part of storytelling is word choice. Luckily, Theory is a talented lyricist, and his verbal imagery is extremely effective in conveying his story. In addition to personal stories, Theory Hazit also takes a shot at a more concept oriented song with “Distorted Joy”, a song told from the point of view of a crack baby, which reminded me a little bit of “Sibling Rivalry” from Sackcloth Fashion’s first album Something for Everyone to Hate. The idea is fascinating, and the execution is haunting.
In addition to being a great storyteller, Theory also proves on Thr3e that he can spit in a more traditional style. The opening track, “Thr3e Intro” is a banger, which finds Theory exploring the number three in biblical and non-biblical contexts. “Old Derty Hazit” is another track that finds Theory referencing a lot of different topics with a sick flow over a banging Dert beat.
On the production side of things, Dert handles the whole album. Dert is a fantastic producer who has bounced around and worked with a lot of different MCs. His work on this album proves that he can handle a myriad of styles. Whether it’s creating a beautiful, haunting feel on tracks like “Find Me” and “Distorted Joy”, or creating a decisive “boom bap” on the intro or “Old Derty Hazit”, Dert shows how truly versatile he can be.
This is a really good album with something for everyone. This is especially true for those who enjoy great hip hop storytelling. So, pull up a chair, put on Thr3e, and take a little trip down Theory Hazit’s own little version of memory lane. It’s a portrait of the artist from a perspective that no one else can have…his own.
Release Date: January 10, 2012
Label: Humble Beast
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1. Three Intro
2. Find Me (feat. B. Reith)
3. What Lies Beneath
4. Old Derty Hazit
6. Angel Pt.2
7. I Need You More Than Ever (feat. Donavan Luke Henry)
8. For A Lack Of A Better Word
9. As The Day Goes Bye
10. Change Gonna Come (feat. Colette Chantel)
11. Distorted Joy (feat. Melanie Rutherford)
12. Doomsday Insurance
13. Jo Jo Dancer