The Ruffcats are one of Gemany's hardest working live bands. When it comes to heavy funk and progressive soul stylings, there ain't no competition for the 8 piece group from Berlin.
The Ruffcats are best known as the studio and backing band of German soul shouter Flo Mega, with whom they have played over 250 gigs over the last two years.
After providing the backbone for an impressive line-up of singers from Bajka to Jaguar Wright to Ladi6 it is now time for the Ruffcats to enter the spotlight as the main act with their first album žThe Essence Pt.1". Citing influences from hip-hop, soul, psych and jazz to Sa Ra Creative Partners, Dilla, Manfred Krug, Can and UK future bass, The Ruffcats aim to play new grooves in an analogue way. And that's excatly what they do on žThe Essence Pt.1".
The funny thing is that the album happened partly by accident. In late January the Ruffcats entered the legendary Lovelite studios in Berlin with little more in mind than taping some jam sessions. In the end they stayed for four days and recorded a full album on the spot. During the sessions Lovelite owner Jochen Ströh, became somewhat of an additional band member, working his trusty analogue 8-track recorder in ways that caused the band to go right back into the recording room and finish the job. Ströh recently recorded and produced Ebo Taylor's latest album for Strut Records and has hosted bands and musicians like the Whitefield Brothers, Tony Allen and Blitz the Ambassador at his studio.
The 11 raw jams on "The Essence Pt. 1" display a band paying hommage to the past whilst pushing their own boundaries to create something fresh and exciting. The musical spectrum covers raw funk, afro-beat, jazz, psych and latin played with a 2012 hip-hop state of mind.