Some sound advice from Whistler's favourite rappers Animal Nation

Hip-hop duo released their latest album on April 20

Kids, you don't want to be like Whistler hip-hop group Animal Nation when you grow up.

The dynamic duo of derelict, Garnet Clare and Mike Armitage, may be the resort's hardest working rappers, but they're no role models. They even named their latest album, Don't Grow Up to Be Like Us, as a warning to the youngsters out there after a particularly irresponsible outing before a show with Saskatoon band Sly Business.

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The guys were "getting pretty day-drunk" outside of an Invermere high school, said Clare, and began to shoot fireworks at each other.

"These kids came up to us after high school and were like 'Hey, what do you have there?' And we started shooting fireworks at them and befriended them a little," said Clare. "We definitely told them not to grow up like us. Sitting in a high school parking lot drinking at three in the afternoon is totally not cool."

Animal Nation teamed with the Saskatoon funksters on the album, released Saturday (April 20), after their then-manager organized a tour with both bands.

"She set us up on a band blind date," said Clare. "We were all really nervous to be trapped inside a van with these guys for two weeks, but as soon as we met their band leader, Mark Ejack, we knew we were going to get along perfectly."

After three years, copious amounts of vodka and a handful of shows together, the bands decided it made perfect sense to join forces in the studio.

Clare said bringing Sly Business into the mix added another layer of fun to Animal Nation's already infectious vibe.

"We're both based in hip hop and we're both based in the fun side of things (Ejack) is a funky, funky guy; he's great on the guitar and he's also amazing on the drums. Everything that he does has those funk notes that takes our folky sound and puts a fun spin on it," he said. "It's the best we've ever sounded as far as either one of our groups. We're all just on point as we've ever been with playing instruments as well as the vocals. It's a career highlight for us so far."

Working with Ejack has also expanded Animal Nation's fanbase to one of Canada's most unlikely hip-hop hotbeds.

"He took us into the Saskatoon scene and introduced us to everyone. If he's not the most popular guy in Saskatoon, he's the second most popular guy," said Clare. "Since hanging out and doing shows with him every year, we go there now and sell out every show in Saskatoon."

Don't Grow Up to Be Like Us is available as a free download at

While they may not be the best examples of responsible adulthood, Animal Nation has another pearl of wisdom for the kids, gained from years of hands-on experience.

"We always tell the kids to eat their vegetables," said Claire, "it'll keep your skin from going grey no matter how much you drink."

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