Comprising rappers Akrobatik (born Jared Bridgeman) and Mr. Lif (Jeffrey Haynes) and initially including DJ Fakts One(Jason Goler), the Perceptionists are to the Boston, Massachusetts hip-hop scene as the Justice League of America are to superheroes: the best of the best marshaling their powers for the collective good. The fiercely political Mr. Lif, whose 2002 album, Emergency Rations, was one of the first hip-hop records to overtly question the abuse of civil liberties in post-9/11 America, meshes well with Akrobatik‘s equally intelligent, socially conscious vibe (as seen on his 2003 solo debut, Balance), and Fakts One‘s imaginative beats add sonic depth to the whole. Friends since their early days on the local scene, the trio first started working together on Fakts One‘s college radio show in the late ’90s, formally adopting the name the Perceptionists in 2000. A 2004 mixtape called The Razor was the trio’s underground bow, before their official debut, Black Dialogue, was released by Definitive Jux in early 2005. Featuring the singles “Memorial Day” and “What Have We Got to Lose?” (which imaginatively sampled Joy Division‘s “She’s Lost Control”), Black Dialogue also featured guest spots by Guru and Digital Underground‘s Shock-G. After the album’s release, the group members went their separate ways. In 2017, Akrobatikand Mr. Lif put aside their differences and revived the Perceptionists. Their reunion album, Resolution, was released by Mello Music Group.
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