I’m going to start this review off with a bit of a warning, Travis Barker‘s “Give The Drummer Some” is much closer to a RAP cd than a PUNK one. Sure, there are definitely punk rock influences and guest stars from the worlds of both punk (Tim Armstrong of Rancid) and metal (Corey Taylor of Slipknot and Stone Sour, Slash of GNR) and even a touch of techno thrown in, but overall “Give The Drummer Some” is a hip hop record. That being said, I really enjoyed this disc, but I’m sure a lot of you will not.
As I said, this is a rap album, but the drums and production were done by a man famous for his work in punk rock so you would expect some speed and aggression in the music and it’s there, but not on all of the tracks. Some of these songs have a more laid back flow to them. I’m not sure how “Give The Drummer Some” was conceived but it feels to me like these beats were custom made for the mc’s that appear on them.
Rappers like Lil’ Wayne and Cypress Hill, who have both released full rock influenced albums, RZA, who is no stranger to aggressive beats and Game, who has worked with Travis in the past handle the vocal duties on the harder, punkier tracks. Others, like Paul Wall, Kurupt, Snoop Dogg and Beanie Sigel handle the more mellow, throw back sounding beats and on “Cool Head”, Kid Cudi rhymes over a beat that sounds like it could have appeared on his latest album. To put it in simple terms, this album has a lot more depth than I was expecting it to have.
My favorite songs on this disc are,
“Raw Shit” featuring Tech N9ne & Bun B. This one contains a bouncy beat that works with each mc’s signature style.
“Can A Drummer Get Some” featuring Lil’ Wayne, Rick Ross, Swizz Beats & Game. This is one of the more rock influenced songs with a guitar, a cool drum beat and probably the best production on the whole album. Usually I’m not a fan of Lil’ Wayne but he’s actually funny on this one and his voice works with the music.
“If You Want To” featuring Pharrell & Lupe Fiasco. This one has a quick beat but it feels more funk than punk influenced. Lupe Fiasco is one of my favorites of the new crew of rappers and he sounds good on this track, it’s not his best work but it’s still better than most.
“Devils Got A Hold” featuring Slaughterhouse. This one is great because the mc’s (Royce Da 5’9″, Crooked I, Joe Budden & Joell Ortiz) tell a dark story rather than just spitting verses that have nothing to do with what the others are saying.
“Carry It” featuring RZA, Raekwon & Tom Morello. I like this one for two reasons. RZA, although he’s not a great lyricist, fits perfectly on this track and Tom Morello’s guitar playing is awesome.
There are several other hip hop songs on the disc that I really enjoyed but I wanted to leave room to cover some of the non-rap aspects of the disc. Like I said at the beginning of this review, punk and metal have definitely influenced this recording but to my surprise there is a straight up rock song on here. It’s called “On My Own” and it is sung by Corey Taylor, the song is more radio rock than metal but it’s actually a good song. There’s also a techno/screaming mess of a song called “Misfits” with Steve Aoki that I just can’t stand, but the big let down for me is the song “Saturday Night” featuring The Transplants. This song is not horrible but it is quite boring. I was hoping for something similar to the stuff that they released on their self titled cd but no… This is another slow song that makes me a bit concerned for the next Transplants album, it’s rumored that it will be released sometime this year.
One more thing before I go, Some of the songs that are mentioned in this review are only available on the deluxe version of the cd.