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Classic Album Review: Transplants | Transplants

Tim Armstrong, Travis Barker & Skinhead Rob unveil their genre-jumping supergroup.


This came out in 2002 – or at least that’s when I got it. Here’s what I said about it back then (with some minor editing):


Funny — thanks to his corroded voice, scruffy attitude and choppy guitar style, I always thought of Tim Armstrong as the Joe Strummer of Rancid. Turns out he’s the Mick Jones — and Transplants, his new solo project, is his Big Audio Dynamite. Although it’s more like BAD on steroids.

Teaming up with Blink-182 drummer Travis Barker and a singer known as Skinhead Rob, Armstrong updates his trademark gutter-punk sound with samples, loops, scratches and breakbeats, concocting a dozen bizarre but intriguing cuts that gene-splice the ferocious intensity of industrial, the sci-fi menace of drum ’n’ bass, the funky foundation of hip-hop, the herky-jerk of ska and the romantic independence of punk. A radical procedure to be sure, but damned if the terrifying beast doesn’t come to life on memorable keepers like Tall Cans In The Air, Quick Death, California Babylon, Romper Stomper and One Seventeen. No fear of rejection here.