Three Four


Time it just keeps ticking away from insanity is grabbing me
Pulling me flooring me one thousand gs are yanking me
I’m thankful for the lesson but now it’s messing with my head
I see these babies run the show they don’t know
I had twice the skills twenty years ago and I still grow
I stay positive with experience Damn I show resilience
But here it is later in the game and the ones that make it
Are just faking it

Taking the spotlight from my life
And what could they have to say?
I don’t know how they make you feel it
Not even good at stealing someone’s lie
And I never stopped a day
If it takes this long to make it
Could it be I’m faking it right now

It gets confusing cause I’m losing the game
They’re getting beautifully rewarded for being seriously lame
It’s a crime – I never made it to the right place at the right time
Struggling juggling bills keeping it real speaking my mind
I’m ready to close the sale but sure it’s too late
It doesn’t make me any younger all this hunger and ache
And I don’t know if I can dummy down enough for the minds
Of what you’re buying

The realest of us get left behind
And what could they have to say?
I don’t know how they make you feel it
Not even good at stealing someone’s lie
And I never stopped a day
If it takes this long to make it
Maybe I’m just faking it right now

I don’t feel this
It’s not real

 

Three Four was one of many songs that started with drummer Ben Gold saying, "I have an idea for a song!" In this case he followed that up with his best impression of a heavy guitar riff and went, "Du-dun, Du-dun, Du-dun, Du-dun Dun, Du-du-du-dun, Du-dun, Du-Dun, Du-dun, Du-dun Dun, Du-du-du-dun, Du-dun, Du-dun, Du-dun Dun, Du-du-du-dun, Du-dun, Du-dun, Du-dun Dun…." And over the course of the next few minutes I found the power chords that sounded to Ben like what he was hearing in his head. Once we had this opening riff down, the rest of the song was a collabaration as far as what the verse sounded like, what the bridge sounded like, and the general order of parts.

In coming up with the words, I honestly can't remember if I had the first verse written already or not, but I do remember writing that verse in LAX airport after a few days of absorbing several albums from the Rhyme Sayers label. My brother had been pushing these artists my way from Minneapolis for a couple of years, but of course I didn't pay attention until my friends here in Chicago were listening, and I remember thinking this was the best available hip-hop at the time (02-03). So once I had this first verse written it was clear to me this song was a golden opportunity for me to excorcise my anger at the rap nu-metal crap that had been driving my crazy for a while. In particular bands like Linkin Park and P.O.D. which were all over the radio had such lame flows that I thought it was a crime that kids were eating this stuff up. I couldn't help but think the free forms we did on the bus in the mid eighties were better than this crap. And power chords with distortion and screaming or barking does NOT make you heavy. Or does it? So I figure we'll take this really heavy song and scream really loud and hard like those guys and there you have it. I double tracked the vocals, and I'll always regret not fixing the part at the end where one vocal says, "Could it be I'm fakin' it" while the other says, "Maybe I'm just fakin' it", but what're you gonna do? Like all four of the Kenilworth Project tracks on the Anthology, these were mixed down years ago, and redoing parts wasn't an option.

I think the highlight of this recording is the guitar solo. When we recorded this song I'm pretty sure Jake was still a teenager, but his guitar always sounded great because he was focused on tone, and when it came to solos he focused on quality over quantity. This is something I unfortunately didn't pay attention to until I was in my 30s and I have to blame all the shit metal I listened to in the 80s and early 90s. So when Jake sat down to do this solo, he took his time, he put down several good takes, he listened to them several times and took the best parts of a couple of them, and had the engineer put them together into one amazing solo that to me sounds like it came right off a Ten Years After record, which is pretty impressive for someone who was born in the 80s.