New Orleans funk band Galactic is working on the follow-up to their 2003 release, Ruckus. The band has been co-writing tracks with a variety of vocalists and MCs including Jurassic 5's Chali 2na, Gift of Gab from Blackalicious, Mr. Lif, Lyrics Born, The Coup's Boots Riley, Lateef the Truthspeaker, Ladybug of Digable Planets, and others. In addition, the record will include various New Orleans icons including Mardi Gras Indian Big Chief Monk Boudreaux and Troy "Trombone Shorty" Andrews.
The hip-hop themed record will meld Galactic's own New Orleans street funk with some of today's most progressive MCs, something the band has experimented with in their live performances. Over the last several years, the group has appeared with the likes of Lyrics Born, Talib Kweli, The Roots, Jurassic 5, and Z-Trip. They also recently backed Juvenile on Jimmy Kimmel Live.
"Everyone in the band listens to a lot of hip-hop" says saxophonist Ben Ellman. "We have always felt there is a natural connection between the New Orleans funk and brass band music that has inspired our sound and the rhythmic aspects of hip-hop. We wanted to push ourselves on this record to do something really different. We felt it would be fun to make an album with some of our favorite MCs with us as a foundation since its always felt great when we've had the opportunity to do it live."
The band is currently considering whether to put the record out on their own imprint or through a label. They are targeting a late summer 2007 release.