Just in case you didn’t know, the breakbeat is the backbone of hip hop. DJ’s would dig for days to find the perfect breakdown in a record where the drums were left open (hence the term breakbeat) to backspin to give the mc’s and the b boys and b girls what they needed to get busy. And behind every dope breakbeat, you’ve gotta have not just a drummer, but a funky drummer. And that’s EXACTLY who Travis Barker is, the funky drummer.
[youtube fXsG8bEIsB4 nolink]
Now, I know it would sound cool for me to say I’ve been down with Trav since the Blink 182 days, blah, blah, blah but truth be told, I don’t think I’ve ever heard a Blink 182 song. In fact, I forgot when I first got put on to Travis Barker but for some reason I always messed with dude. Maybe it was the tattoos, maybe it was the ferocity that he plays his drums with. But it was something about dude that just screamed hip hop. Which is why I wasn’t shocked when videos started floating around the net of him drumming live over hip hop songs. In fact, it’s only because of Trav that I can actually stomach Soulja Boy’s “Crank That” song. So, when I first heard Trav was dropping a solo album featuring everybody from Beanie Sigel, Slaughterhouse, Raekwon, Cypress Hill and the Clipse, again I wasn’t shocked and my next thought was “it’s about time!” So how would the 2011 funky drummer’s first dolo album featuring hip hop’s elite fare? Well we’re about to find out.
The album sets off with “Can A Drummer Get Some” with Swizz Beatz, Lil Wayne and Game and “Carry It” with Rza and Raekwon and both have a hard rock edge to them. “Knockin” is a mellow banger with Snoop, Ludacris and spitting their game and “The Devil’s Gotta Hold On Me” featuring Slaughterhouse is the perfect backdrop for Joell, Crooked, Royce and Mr. Budden to go in on. But the jewel of the album for me is “Just Chill” with Bun B and Beans. Yeah, you can’t go wrong with that jawn right there.
For me, I think I expected this album to be straight up and down hip hop after seeing the lineup but after chillin’ with it for a minute, I came to the realization that Travis is a rock dude, first and foremost. I’m the one who said it was something about him that screamed hip hop, which is true but at the end of the day, rock is what dude does. So, after falling back and listening to the album from that perspective, I enjoyed the album much more and I think you will too if your expectations were anything like mine.
3.5 outta 5