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ARTIST
TITLE
Ruff Kutz
FORMAT
2LP

LABEL
CATALOG #
PAN 058LP PAN 058LP
GENRE
RELEASE DATE
3/31/2015

Double LP pressed on 140-gram vinyl. PAN digs into the archives of WordSound label founder Skiz Fernando Jr. (aka Spectre) to reissue for the first time his 1998 experimental hip-hop mixtape, Ruff Kutz, originally released as an extremely limited edition cassette. A definitive mixtape featuring hits, remixes, previously unreleased tracks, and dub-plate specials from Sensational, Mr. Dead, Bill Laswell, Jungle Brothers, Kevin Martin, and many more. The early '90s witnessed a spike in mutant strains of future dub. In Bristol, trip-hop and jungle were on the rise; in Manhattan it was noise and breakbeat. But in Brooklyn, hip-hop experimentation was gaining momentum, led by Skiz's independent label WordSound. With support from Bill Laswell, WordSound charted the experimental edge of hip-hop and dub, taking equal inspiration from Bronx rap and Jamaican roots music as they pioneered a lo-fi sound both primal and futuristic. By the turn of the decade, the combination of dub, ambient, and hip-hop aesthetics had been baptized by The Wire magazine as "illbient" -- a short-lived classification now being exhumed in the form of Spectre's obscure mixtape, Ruff Kutz. Ruff Kutz revisits the years between 1994 and '98, a formative era for WordSound and experimental beats in general. The original cassette, according to Skiz, was composed of alternative mixes, obscure beats, and unreleased tracks and edits. Unsigned material from Dubadelic (supergroup of Bill Laswell, Ted Parsons, DXT, and others), rapper Sensational, Kevin "The Bug" Martin's Techno Animal project, Professor Shehab as his lyrical alter-ego Psycho Priest, Djini Brown, Mr. Dead of the Metabolics, Doc Israel, Scotty Hard, and Slotek all appear throughout this vinyl reissue, fully mastered for the first time from the original DAT tapes in their original sequence. Mastered and cut at Dubplates & Mastering.