Ratatat

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Not to be confused with Rattata.
Ratatat
Ratatat live.png
Ratatat performing in New York City, 2015.
Background information
Origin Brooklyn, New York, United States
Genres
Years active 2001–present
Labels XL Recordings, Rex Records, Audio Dregs
Associated acts Despot, Kid Cudi, Björk, White Flight, Daft Punk
Website ratatatmusic.com
Members Evan Mast
Mike Stroud

Ratatat (pronounced RAT-ə-tat) is a Brooklyn-based rocktronica duo consisting of Mike Stroud (guitar, melodica, synthesizers, percussion) and producer Evan Mast (bass, synthesizers, percussion).

History[edit]

Beginnings and first album (2001–2005)[edit]

Evan Mast and Mike Stroud first met as students at Skidmore College. When they started working together in 2001, recording several songs under the name "Cherry",[1] Stroud had previously toured with Dashboard Confessional in 2000.[2]

In 2003, the group debuted by releasing the single "Seventeen Years" on Mast's and his brother Eric's (E*Rock) record label Audio Dregs in the US and Rex Records in the UK.

In the following year, Ratatat supported the band Interpol on their tour.[2] Mike Stroud stepped down as touring member of Ben Kweller's band after two years of touring and after appearing on the 2004 album, On My Way. Having signed for XL Recordings, Ratatat released their self-titled debut album, Ratatat and the single "Germany to Germany". The album was written and recorded in Mast's Crown Heights, Brooklyn apartment on his laptop.[2] It is entirely instrumental with the exception of vocal excerpts at the beginning and end of select tracks.

Also in 2004, Ratatat released Ratatat Remixes Vol. 1 in co-operation with Audio Dregs, a compilation of remixed tracks by other artists, thereby garnering the attention of Rolling Stone.[3]

Second album, Classics (2006–2008)[edit]

On 22 August 2006, Ratatat released their second album entitled Classics on XL Recordings.

On October 6, 2006, Ratatat became the first band to perform a public show inside the Guggenheim Museum in New York City.

On October 10, 2006, a new demo album from Ratatat titled 9 Beats was leaked online. This set of tracks does not appear on any official discography listings. 9 Beats was not an official album, the tracks consist of short instrumental electronic musical pieces and demos for their next mixtape.[4] In 2007, this release was followed by their second volume of remixed tracks, Ratatat Remixes Vol 2..

From June 2007 until October 2008, Ratatat had Martin Bonventre accompany them on their European tour and Fall shows in America as the pianist/synthesizer player. Bonventre drew much attention due to his erratic dance movements on stage. The reason for him leaving the performance is unknown.[citation needed]

Third album, LP3 (2008–2009)[edit]

Leading up to the release of Ratatat's third album LP3 on 8 July 2008, their official website showed the videos of the three first singles. "Shiller", "Shempi" and then "Mirando" have all been released (or announced) on 7" or 12" singles. "Shiller", the first to be released, featured a special b-side, the track "Mahalo"[5] which was later also included on the fourth album, LP4.

In 2008, it was rumored that they would be signed by Star Trak Entertainment as the understudies of The Neptunes.[6][7]

Ratatat contributed two songs to Man on the Moon: The End of Day, the debut album by alternative rapper Kid Cudi, released September 15, 2009. They performed together on Late Show with David Letterman on September 11, 2009. The two songs are produced in the similar electronic style Ratatat is known for; those titled "Alive" and "Pursuit Of Happiness" featuring MGMT.

Fourth album, LP4 (2010-2014)[edit]

According to Mike Stroud in an interview with Paste Magazine released on August 4, 2009, "most of [LP4] was recorded during the same studio sessions that yielded LP3".[8] Ratatat's fourth album, LP4, was released on June 8, 2010, via XL Recordings.

In 2010, Ratatat supported Vampire Weekend on their UK tour at The Brighton Centre and Alexandra Palace. Meanwhile, their song Neckbrace was used in the ski film "The Way I See It" by Matchstick Productions.[9] In 2011, their track "Mirando" was used in Prada's SS2011 ad campaign.[10]

In August 2011, Ratatat was featured in the song "Red Alert" on CSS's new album La Liberación.

On September 29, 2012 past collaborator Kid Cudi confirmed that Ratatat would be featured and producing on his upcoming third studio album Indicud, however the collaboration didn't make the final cut after Kid Cudi decided to produce the whole album by himself, with the exception of an additional production by Hit-Boy on the track "Red Eye" featuring Haim.[11]

In May 2013 they entered the Austrian Singlecharts after the Austrian network provider A1 used "Loud Pipes" for a radio-advertisement.

Fifth album, Magnifique (2015–present)[edit]

The band played Coachella Festival and Governor's Ball Music Festival in 2015. They debuted their new song "Cream On Chrome" just a few hours before their night-ending Coachella set on April 11, 2015. The band also played a concert in Pomona, California on April 15, 2015,[12] and also played at Primavera Sound in Barcelona in May.

In May 2015, the band announced that their fifth album, Magnifique, would be released on July 17, 2015, and feature a cover of the 1971 Springwater single "I Will Return".[13]

Live performances[edit]

Ratatat's live performances bear strong similarities to the performances of the psychedelic rock bands out of San Francisco in the 1960s, with energetic light shows, swirling colors projected onto a screen, and clips of movies thrown in. Evan Mast creates and edits the videos that are projected on the screen. Many of them are included on their YouTube account.

Ratatat has toured with bands such as Björk, Daft Punk, Mouse on Mars, Franz Ferdinand, CSS, The Faint, Super Furry Animals, Clinic, Panther, and The Killers.

Discography[edit]

Studio albums[edit]

Album Date Label
Ratatat April 20, 2004 XL Recordings
Ratatat Remixes Vol. 1 2004 Self-released
Classics August 22, 2006 XL Recordings
Ratatat Remixes Vol. 2 2007 Self-released
LP3 July 8, 2008 XL Recordings
LP4 June 8, 2010[14] XL Recordings
Magnifique July 17, 2015[15] Because Music (Europe) / XL Recordings (US)

Singles[edit]

Song Album Date Label
"Seventeen Years" Ratatat 2003 Rex Records/Audio Dregs
"Cherry" October 4, 2004 XL Recordings
"Wildcat" Classics July 25, 2006
"Lex" October 30, 2006
"Loud Pipes" 2007
"Shiller" LP3 May 6, 2008
"Mirando" (video clip) June 2008
"Shempi" September 23, 2008
"Mirando" (single) February 3, 2009
"Party with Children" LP4 2010
"Drugs" 2010
"Cream on Chrome" Magnifique April 11, 2015
"Abrasive" June 16, 2015
Featured in

Remixes[edit]

Artist Title Year
Shout Out Louds "The Comeback" (Big Slippa Remix by Ratatat) 2005
The Knife "We Share Our Mothers' Health" (Ratatat Remix) 2006
Biz Markie "Vapors" (Remix by Ratatat) 2006
Television Personalities "You Kept Me Waiting Too Long" (Ratatat Remix) 2007
Björk "Wanderlust" (Ratatat Remix) 2008
The Notorious BIG "Party and Bullshit" (Ratatat Remix) 2008

References[edit]

  1. ^ Laurence, Alexander (September 2004). "Ratatat". freewilliamsburg.com. Free Williamsburg. Retrieved 10 July 2010. 
  2. ^ a b c Leckart, Steven (28 August 2006). "Have laptop will travel". today.com. msnbc.com. Retrieved 14 August 2015. 
  3. ^ Relic, Peter (28 July 2004). "Hot Remixers: Ratatat". rollingstone.com. Rolling Stone. Archived from the original on 12 May 2009. Retrieved 14 August 2015. 
  4. ^ Rob. "Ratatat 9 Beats Hits Hard". Bittersweet Blog. Retrieved 2006-12-07. 
  5. ^ Beggars Group USA - Releases
  6. ^ Gintowt, Richard (August 27, 2008). "Ratatat". Retrieved 2009-04-09. 
  7. ^ Samuel (July 3, 2008). "Ratatat: frequency bad-asses on LP3". Retrieved 2009-04-09. 
  8. ^ Julia Askenase (August 4, 2009). "Ratatat's Mike Stroud Talks New Album". Paste. Retrieved 2010-07-10. 
  9. ^ "soundtrack of Matchstick Productions - The Way I See It". Lcymeeke.nobody.jp. Retrieved 2012-04-09. 
  10. ^ "Prada SS2011 ad campaign". YouTube. 2011-02-07. Retrieved 2012-04-09. 
  11. ^ Andy Bustard (2012-10-01). "Kid Cudi Promises Ratatat Collaborations On 'Indicud'". Prefixmag.com. Retrieved 2012-10-18. 
  12. ^ James Rettig (2015-04-11). "Ratatat – "Cream On Chrome"". Stereogum.com. Retrieved 2015-04-11. 
  13. ^ Evan Minsker, "Ratatat Announce New Album Magnifique," Pitchfork, May 19, 2015.
  14. ^ "LP4, Ratatat, Music CD - Barnes & Noble". Music.barnesandnoble.com. Retrieved 2010-07-10. 
  15. ^ "Ratatat". ratatatmusic.com. Retrieved 2010-07-10. 
  16. ^ LesCharts.com Charting position of "Pursuit of Happiness" song page

External links[edit]