Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Song #93: Timbaland feat. Jet - "Timothy Where You Been"

I finally got around to sussing out Timbaland’s Shock Value II guestlist. It was nowhere near as strong as the first go around which had Elton John, Dr. Dre, Fall Out Boy, Missy Elliott, Nelly Furtado, etc. This is all Chad Kroeger, Miley Cyrus, Katy Perry, The Fray, Drake…y’know, somewhat good, but definitely not great. Of particular interest to me, however, was the collaboration with Australian band Jet. The song that Timbaland samples for the song Timothy Where You Been is, strangely enough, Timothy, the final track on Jet’s Get Born album. For all the crap the band gets, Timothy is actually one of their best works. It’s a heartfelt ballad around the story of Timothy Cester, the eldest Cester sibling (Nic is the vocalist and Chris is the drummer), who died before Nic was born and was mentally disabled.

With this in mind, it’s strange and a little offensive to think Timbaland has taken the song to be an “all-about-me” ego trip. Sure, the interpolation and reworking of Timothy is very cleverly done, but it’s no secret that Timbo is not a very good rapper or lyricist. His flow is menial and his rhymes pointless – perhaps the rhyme of “Nelly Furtado” and “escargot” could have been avoided if he wasn’t trying to big-up himself and name-drop at the same time? Ahh, who knows. The point is that the whole thing is great when Timbaland keeps his mouth shut. Isn’t that the same for nearly everyone of his tracks to begin with, though?

FINAL RATING (/10): 5.5

Shock Value II is out now.


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