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Birth nameRudolf Ratzinger[1]
Also known asRudy Ratzinger
Born (1966-06-03) 3 June 1966 (age 57)
Gangkofen, Bavaria, West Germany
OriginMunich, Bavaria, Germany
Years active1991–present

Wumpscut (stylised as :wumpscut: or simply :w:) is a gothic-influenced electro-industrial music project from Germany. It was founded in May 1991 by Bavarian disc jockey Rudolf "Rudy" Ratzinger (born 1966).


Rudy Ratzinger is the creative force behind Wumpscut, occasionally employing the help of guest artists (such as Aleta Welling, P·A·L, Selene etc.), although such collaborations were minimal in scope.[2] Ratzinger cites the influence of such bands as Leæther Strip as his reason for making the transfer from DJing to recording music: "I was a DJ for several years and was tired of offering the audience only alien stuff. The first Leæther Strip works were responsible for trying something on my own."[3]

First works performed by Wumpscut dates back to the early 1990s when Rudy Ratzinger started to play music in Bavarian club houses and in Southern Germany. In a 1997 interview, Rudy Ratzinger reveals that "Pornography" and "War Combattery" were his first two songs in EBM, those two four-minute songs are to be found on Defcon, the first demo issued by Wumpscut in late 1991.[3] Yet, only "Pornography" was picked for reappearance on Blutkind (although a remix of War Combattery surfaced on the Mesner Tracks re-release EP which was released before). According to Rudy, "War Combattery" was a great hit in club houses: "[It] was a very big success in the clubs in Southern Germany."

The release of the song "Soylent Green", which is named after the 1973 movie and also contains audio samples from the German dubbed version, first attracted attention to Wumpscut. Since its release in 1993, it has become a frequently played song at events and clubs in the goth and industrial subcultures, in Germany, UK and the United States.[4] The 1997 album, Embryodead made an appearance at #20 on the CMJ RPM chart in the U.S.[5]

Wumpscut produced elaborate box set releases including limited versions of CD or LP releases with additional and bonus material (bonus tracks, "liquid soylent" energy drinks, posters, pins, stickers, bags, flags, etc.). Wumpscut albums were reissued with variant artworks, remastering and track listings. Standalone merchandise such as baseball caps, coffee mugs and t-shirts were also made available for purchase.

Rudy Ratzinger has to date released seventeen studio albums[6] plus a number of compilations: demos, compilation tracks, and remixes from deleted singles and EPs. The sixteenth Wumpscut album, Wüterich, was released on 25 March 2016 on the Metropolis label.[7] He released a "best of" album titled Innerfire on 5 May 2017, while also announcing that Wumpscut would no longer be producing or making any new music on his Facebook and Twitter accounts.

On 5 November 2020, a new album entitled "Fledermavs 303" was announced with the release of a teaser track through the Wumpscut page on Bandcamp,[8] presumably implying that Rudy has returned to producing music again.

On 2 April 2021, a new album entitled "Fledermavs 303" was released.

Record labels[edit]

Ratzinger started his own record label, Beton Kopf Media, in 1995, used exclusively to release Wumpscut material to the European market.[2] In 1996, he started the label Mental Ulcer Forges which lapsed in the early 2000s, then relaunched in 2006.[9] The label released albums by the following bands: Remyl, Noisex, B-Ton-K, Yendri and F/A/V. Rudy also managed the label Fleisskoma with Karl Kimmerl (B-Ton-K), which has released work by the electronic band Press to Transmit.

Live performance[edit]

Despite the project's popularity in the electro-industrial genre, Wumpscut is a studio-only project and never tours. When asked for his reason behind this decision, Rudy commented: "I cannot come up to my self-set level."[10]


See also[edit]


  1. ^ Arnsperger, Malte (20 March 2009). "Gothic-Band "Wumpscut": Amoklauf zu bayerischer Musik" [Gothic-Band "Wumpscut": Rampage to Bavarian Music] (in German). Stern. Retrieved 20 March 2009.
  2. ^ a b Lindner, Petra (1996). "Interview:Wumpscut". Culture Shock (2). Hackensack, NJ: Genocide Project: 25–27. ISSN 1093-1651.
  3. ^ a b "Interview with :Wumpscut: - conducted by Kevin Congdon - 5/97". Sonic Boom. Chris Christian. 5 January 2004. Archived from the original on 12 September 2011.
  4. ^ Pressboard, Burton (Spring 2011). "Views + Reviews + Other Stuff: THE NEW CLASSIC INDUSTRIAL". TheWritingDisorder.com.
  5. ^ Frampton, Megan (3 November 1997). "RPM" (PDF). CMJ New Music Report. 52 (544). Great Neck, NY: College Media, Inc.: 20. ISSN 0890-0795. Retrieved 12 December 2021.
  6. ^ Van Isacker, Bernard (4 March 2016). "Wumpscut returns with 'Wüterich' – various editions now available for ordering incl. vinyl ones". Side-Line Music Magazine. Retrieved 4 November 2016.
  7. ^ "WUMPSCUT. WUTERICH. CD". Storming the Base. Retrieved 4 November 2016.
  8. ^ "Wumpscut - Fledermavs 303". 5 November 2020. Retrieved 5 November 2020.
  9. ^ Van Isacker, Bernard (26 January 2006). "Mental Ulcer Forges label resurrected". Side-Line Music Magazine. Archived from the original on 2 October 2012.
  10. ^ Urselli, Marc (25 June 2005). "Wumpscut". Chain D.L.K. Retrieved 20 January 2018.

External links[edit]