REVIEW: Travis Barker and Yelawolf – Psycho White


Artist: Travis Barker and Yelawolf
Album: Psycho White
Genre: Experimental/Rap/Rock

There was a time within the last decade when artist collaborations were a rare thing saved for gigantic singles, but that time is quickly becoming a distant memory. These days, if you’re a recognizable face in mainstream music there is a 97%* chance at any given time you will guest on a song by another pretty face within the next six months. For Blink-182 drummer Travis Barker and rapper Yelawolf, the occasional collaboration wasn’t enough, and this week the world is graced with the release their first joint EP, Psycho White.

So what happens when one of the world’s most recognizable drummers partners with one of the top 3 mainstream white rappers around? Unfortunately, not as much quality as one may have hoped. Psycho White consists of five tracks, including the infectiously catchy “Push Em,” but rarely, if ever, feels like a complete release. Barker and Yelawolf clearly have a strong passion for experimentation, as well as mutual respect for each other’s influences, I just wish those elements worked as well together as they do apart. “Push Em” sets the listener up for an energetic, drum-heavy take on melding the worlds of punk and hip hop, but everything that follows might as well have been released as separate tracks week apart from one another. There is no cohesion, just singles, and I am sorry to report that few have the potential to actually go anywhere. There are bits and pieces from each artist’s background and side projects, and it’s fun to hear everything thrown in the “musical blender,” but the results could not be more mixed.

Being a rabid fan of both hip-hop and punk (especially the work of Blink-182), I was interested to see what Travis Barker and Yelawolf would create when Psycho White was announced. Having now listened to the release numerous times in recent days I find myself questioning what it was that I thought I would hear in the first place as I now sit feeling letdown and underwhelmed. Psycho White is interesting, and I’ll likely tell a few people to give it a spin, but at the end of the day I cannot honestly that I will even remember this release when reflecting on 2012 in the months to come. This is the sound of friends with a mutual love for music trying to create something new and offering their best efforts. If they find what they’re looking for, and I think they might, another release could prove to be something great. This, however, is admirable at best.

SCORE: 5.5/10
Review written by: James Shotwell (Twitter)

* = This is a statistic I made up because my desire to write at length about the topic of the rising frequency of artist collaborations over the last five years was far less great than my desire to finish this review.

James Shotwell

James Shotwell is the founder of Under The Gun Review. He loves writing about music and movies almost as much as he loves his two fat cats. He's also the co-founder of Antique Records and the Marketing Coordinator for Haulix. You should probably follow him on Twitter.

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  • l Rfly l

    10/10 to me

  • Amirhossssein

    well, fair review(not the score though)

    but u missed the point , its an EP , u cant expect a concept album , but at the end yeah songs didn’t match very well

    its at LEAST 7.5

    could have been a looooooot better if it was an Album

    but still , better that 90% of mainstream music out there , cant complain