Travis Barker releases solo album "Give the Drummer Some"
Famed drummer Travis Barker released his first solo album, Give The Drummer Some on March 15th. Barker, made famous by his work with blink-182, The Aquabats, and The Transplants, kicked off a promo tour three days after the album's release. I Am Music II Tour, launched on March 18th in Buffalo, N.Y. and aside from Barker, includes Lil Wayne, Rick Ross and Nicki Minaj. Barker has also scheduled autograph singings at certain Tilly's retail locations. After a listen, Give The Drummer Some, Barker's highly anticipated album proves to be a bummer from the drummer. He has teamed up with many artists in the past giving great results, as highlighted in his recent partnership with Montreal native A-Trak; Barker's latest attempt is sadly off beat.
Lil Wayne, Game, Swizz Beatz, Wu-Tang Clan, E-40, Tech N9NE, and Paul Wall are just a few names of the many A-list rappers with which Barker collaborates. Unfortunately, this hip-hop ensemble does not blend well. "Cool Head," featuring rapper Scott Mescudi, better known as Kid Cudi, exemplifies the incompatibilities found throughout the album.
While the New York artist Kid Cudi has collaborated successfully with other artists including Ratatat and Kanye West, his work with Barker falls short. Cudi's raspy, laid back, off tune vocals clash with the succinct rhythm of Barker's drum set. Most tracks on "Give The Drummer Some" confront this issue. Highly repetitive and non-unique lyrics plague Barker's genuine drumbeats.
Although inconsistent as a whole, the album does have a few gems. Guns and Roses guitarist Slash, and Barker's long time band mates The Transplants, join forces with Barker on the single "Saturday Night," a track that stands out from the rest. "Just Chill" with Beanie Sigel, Bun B and Kobe synergistically combines raw drums and vocals to achieve a natural feel.
With the long list of cameo talent on this CD, at least one track is sure to appeal to any hip-hop fan. Still, the lack of focus and consistency from track to track deteriorates the overall quality. Maybe Barker has stretched himself too thin?
The famous drummer does not sit still. Give the Drummer Some, and his promo tour are just a couple of many projects Barker has going. blink-182, Barker's claim to fame, is scheduled to release an album later this year. Barker also runs his own record label, LaSalle Records, which currently has four bands singed, including Barker's Transplants.
Sadly, a genius concept flops with the release of Give The Drummer Some. Barker's beats aren't the problem, but rather the incompatible mish mash of vocal styles that ultimately sabotage the flow.
Barker supplies great drumbeats, but unfortunately, a few of the contributing artists couldn't handle the set.