While rap-rock bawitabad its way to the top of the charts in the ‘90s, today the genre is relatively obscure and widely maligned. Not long after Run DMC and Aerosmith left the stage together, the genre was dominated and destroyed by legions of bros with backwards caps.
At first, Show and Today’s Hits were drawn together by their mutual love of pizza and partying. They actually performed on the same bill before and knew they both had a lot of pizza-themed songs.
ShowYouSuck’s energetic, unabashed raps are a celebration of his nerdy interests, from girls to video games. He said the central flaw of many rap-rock collaborations is they lose the core of what made the rap side of it great.
“It’s real easy to make it corny,” he said.
Today’s Hits started as an experiment by James Swanberg to see if he could create a song every day. Three years and 1,500 songs later, Swanberg said they decided to take the surf/garage rock group’s simple but catchy style and perform as ShowYouSuck’s backing band. The end result: surf rap rock.
“It’s not an aggressive form of rock and roll, but we love it,” Swanberg said. “So it’s not normal or traditional rap rock, it’s not aggressive rock coming at you, this is a smooth rap rock.”
This blending of genres and influences isn’t new to ShowYouSuck, who early in his career found that focusing on things that he loved in his rhymes made them appeal to his friends who weren’t necessarily into rap music.
“If something actually cool, not cool from type, that’s universal, people are going to connect to that,” Show said. “Cool brings people from different cultures together.”