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Ghetto-Dubsters, Bootleg Rascal, from Sydney and Gold Coast are masters of hip-hop infused jams and sonic brews: blending infectious alternative rhythms with “Exquisitely raspy vocals “ (theMusic.com May 2015).
The reprobates that make up Bootleg Rascal, as dodgy as the name suggests, include Carlos, Jimmy, and Jack.
The band have been touring since they formed in mid-2013 when the group of misfits first met in the back room of a seedy Sydney gig. Bonding over their love of music and tacos and spreading/sharing tales of childish escapades (still to this day). Soon after, they hit the garage and crafted together their first ep of original material and toured – up and down the east coast - their first gig was playing Woodford Folk Festival in 2013/14.
Their dubalicious single ‘Oh I Know’ went straight onto Triple J on high rotation and picked up play on community radio stations including: 4ZZZ, PBS and 2SER. Their hooky disco beats, sick riffs and Carlos’s sexy vocals, you’ll be singing the tunes hours after you’ve had a whiff of ‘em, and what’s more, you’ll have forgotten where you’ve picked it up from – kinda suits them to a tee. The burrito-slingin’ dub monsters released their first full-length album,‘Asleep In The Machine’ last year. The album hones in on their mutant dublactic hip-hop sounds and hooky song-crafting. The title track single, ‘Asleep In The Machine’, was added to Triple J’s rotation list the week of its release. Triple J were also able to help them participate in ‘Like A Version’ where they did a killer cover of The Weekend’s ‘The Hills’ and an original, ‘Asleep In The Machine’.
Staying true to the Rascal flavour, the album, ‘Asleep In The Machine’ (released thru Sureshaker) features some taco-licking tones that shoot from the hip and bounce off into a galaxy of space gorillaz. It’s an album that will dip you into a Cancun boat party, then shake you into the Sunday morning recovery. Carlos’ prego sauce-dipped vocals are the salsa in the taco layer. Sitting above Jimmy’s unique intergalactic guitar riffs and Jack’s trip-hop beats and kicks on a bed of dublactic bass lines and synths.
During 2015 they toured with their brothers in arms, Sticky Fingers, in Europe. Playing to Sellout crowds in France, UK, Holland and Germany. Then wrapped up the year with a bang at Festival of the Sun (Port Macquarie), Lost Paradise (Peats Ridge) and The Falls Festival (Byron Bay).
Bootleg Rascal jetted off to North America with Sticky Fingers in April 2016, to join them on a month long tour. Playing to sold out shows all over North America and Canada. After touring around America they returned to Europe in June/July for their first headline tour over there.
The rascals recently played one of Australia’s juiciest festivals, The Big Pineapple where they performed to a heaving midday crowd and fed them a 12 course set menu filled with dub-hop beats and 80’s electro soul vibes alongside their label-mates Boo Seeka and Gold Member. 2017 has seen the Bootleg Rascal boys undertake their first ever headline tour of NZ with a clean sweep selling out all shows in Wellington, Auckland, Queenstown and Christchurch. Off the back of their completely sold out Aus tour, the band jumped a plane and flew straight to Europe and then to the UK to play a couple of shows, hitting capacity in Leeds and Amsterdam.
With a couple of months down time back on home soil, the band are currently working on their second full length album alongside longtime collaborator/producer Ian Pritchett (Boo Seeka & Kim Churchill). Their first single ‘Love Her Like I Love You’ (2016) is the first taste of what’s to come from their forthcoming second LP. A record that emphasizes their melodic knack, unique use of loops and explores a recent obsession for 80’s sounds and drum pads taking cues from Happy Mondays, Bowie and Peter Gabriel.