Travis Barker, the iconic tattooed drum legend of pop-punk powerhouse Blink 182, has always had one foot in hip-hop culture. So, now that we’re experiencing a golden age of alternative hip-hop that flirts with punk, emo, metal and everything else you used to only find in Kerrang, it makes sense that Barker would have a hand in pushing this culture forward.
From chart topping hits with Machine Gun Kelly to underground rap cuts with $UICIDEBOY$, Barker has remained relevant with his incredible ear for production and fabled drumming slaps. Most of all, these collaborations have shown how passionate Barker is about helping these up and coming artists take that next step up the ladder, providing not only his musical talent but also his knowledge of the industry and what it takes to make it.
With that, here’s our top five modern Travis Barker collabs…
nothing,nowhere x Travis Barker – “destruction”
Travis and nothing,nowhere surprised everyone in 2019, releasing their joint EP ‘Bloodlust’ out of the blue. Talking to RIDE on how the project came about, NN. said “Travis and I somehow run in similar circles, I was out in LA and heard he wanted to get in the studio so of course we made it happen. Before I knew it we just kept meeting up at the studio and we had so many songs we just said screw it let’s put these on an EP. Really grateful that we have musicians like Travis, he’s a real dude and truly cares about music.”
Machine Gun Kelly x YUNGBLUD x Travis Barker – “I Think I’m OKAY”
This pop-punk hit with rap come rockstar Machine Gun Kelly and hotly tipped Brit YUNGBLUD became one of the biggest tracks of 2019. The infectious chorus and simple, old school pop-punk approach has made this a staple track at alt-rock nights all over the world, quickly becoming Travis’ most streamed song with 136,000,000+ plays on Spotify. Simply colossal.
$UICIDEBOY$ x Travis Barker – “Aliens Are Ghosts”
This link up with the biggest underground hip-hop act in the game right now shows just how respected Travis is within this scene. He can collab with mainstream giants bagging himself a chart topper and still come back to collab with the likes of $UICIDEBOY$. A hard bass trap banger that infamously samples clips from ‘The Internet’s Busiest Music Nerd’ Anthony Fantano is brought to life by Travis’ drums and production.
Travis Barker x Jasiah x Nascar Aloe – “Dogshit”
Jasiah and Nascar Aloe are two of the biggest names up and coming on a wave of rage filled trap metal. This collab with Travis is all about that rage, the drummer’s influence creating a supreme rap metal smash with crisp production as well as a chaotic scream-lead chorus.
Lil Peep & XXXTentacion – “Falling Down” (Travis Barker Remix)
Not a collaboration but a reworking, this remix of two decade defining artists – Lil Peep & XXXTentaction – is potentially the best version of this posthumously released song. Travis’ addition of live drums and guitar really gives this version an egde on the poppy, bubblegum original – it’s so much more dramatic. Whether you think this track should have ever been released or not, you can agree that this version is much truer to both artists’ styles. Travis did ‘em proud.
Words: Johno Ramsay // Photo: Perla Diaz