By Thomas QuinlanHaving already collaborated with each other in various combinations, Backburner rappers Timbuktu (of Toolshed) and Juno nominee Ghettosocks (Alpha Flight) team with legendary Halifax producer/DJ/rapper Jorun Bombay to further explore their chemistry over a full album. They begin with a loose concept that places the trio in situations inspired by the teen comedies of the '80s and '90s, such as Fast Times At Ridgemont High and The Breakfast Club. Interludes (all too long) and movie samples reinforce the prevalent themes. Skipping classes, partying, picking up chicks and maybe attending that rare class is a great framework around which to build a party album, and Jorun's constantly changing beats certainly match the mood. In fact, while Tim and Socks invoke classic teen movies with their lyrics, Jorun's sparing use of familiar samples and breaks adds another layer by invoking the music of that period, like the teasing cuts from Run DMC's "Peter Piper" and their "There it is!" on "Party Scramble" or any of the numerous examples tossed into "Pop N Chips Remix." Jo's plentiful use of cuts for choruses also harkens back to those golden days and his three vocal appearances are a welcome contribution that would have been sorely missed. El Da Sensei and More Or Les also provide a little more vocal variety, on a song each, both remixes, and D-Sisive provides the chorus for "Kill Lincoln." But Tim and Socks are more than capable of holding it down on their own, as they prove with their impressive Beastie Boys-style back-and-forth raps on "Prom (Rock the Discotech Remix)." Not just a quality release, Burgertime is also a great example of how to properly collaborate on an album.
How did you guys connect? Timbuktu: Socks and I were put together by Kils and Fester, in hopes we would click and make magic; we did. Jo and I really got tight when I was out East filming the video for "Ballz In Yo Stomach."
Ghettosocks: I had heard of Timbuktu previous to our meeting, and was aware of his crew, Toolshed, but didn't really put it all together until after we met in Halifax. I met Jorun a number of years ago at the Khyber Club in Halifax after I moved out East in 2001/2002.
Jorun Bombay: I knew Ghettosocks for a minute already. Timbuk knew of me from the Bassments of Badmen comp and I knew of Tim from his affiliation in Backburner, but I think we all officially met up at the "Ballz in Yo Stomach" video shoot.
What was the first song you worked on together? Ghettosocks: I'm not sure which song was first, but for the Teenburger album, Burgertime, we pretty much wrote the whole thing over the course of a few days at my house in Halifax. "Kill Lincoln" may have been the first one, although I'm not entirely sure. Timbuktu had already written his verse for "Halloween Special" before we had decided to form the group, so I guess technically that was the first song for Burgertime that was worked on. I believe the first song that Timbuktu and I worked on [prior to Burgertime] was "Ballz in Yo Stomach," off of the I Can Make Your Dog Famous mixtape, which was mixed by DJ Jorun Bombay.
Timbuktu: The first song Socks and I worked on was "Hit Em With His Running Shoes," but for all three of us, it must have been "Ballz In Yo Stomach."
Jorun Bombay: Outside of "Ballz in Yo Stomach," it would have been "Rock the Discotech" on Ghettosocks' album.
What was it that made you want to continue to collaborate with each other? Timbuktu: Fun! I was immediately blown away by Socks' music and I had been a fan of Jo's for some time, but it was the fun that made me want to keep going.
Ghettosocks: I think our friendship allowed us to continue to work together. We always have a lot of laughs and making music and doing shows is a great excuse to get together.
Jorun Bombay: Hanging out together is half of it right there. When you click with people and you know their personalities, it's easier to come with your best shit or at least the type of music that matches the background music of what would be playing when we are all hanging out. Darren and Tim have their quirks, so the music had to specifically match that.
At what point did you decide to do an album together? Jorun Bombay: The idea to link up to make Teenburger came from Timbuk wanting to make a whole solo release with me. I asked, "Why not bring in Ghettosocks and make this a three-man project? We're all hanging out together anyway so it just makes sense."
Timbuktu: The conversation happened during game seven of the Stanley Cup finals ― the year the Penguins won. We were listening to beats at the Vault and Jo suggested the combo and I tried to remain calm. (Droppin' Science)