Away from the stage, Rattex’s calm and quiet demeanor belies the intense fire that burns deep within him. Rattex takes his name from a well-known brand of rat poison commonly used in South Africa’s townships. Just like the poison, Rattex’s flows are venomous and deadly.
1981, born Thabo Twetwa in Nyanga, Cape Town, Rattex (or ‘Rah’ to his friends and fans) came into the world during an intense period of political turmoil and racial oppression.
Not knowing his father, Rattex was raised by his grandmother. For most of his childhood he believed that his mother was his sister. At the age of 9, Rattex moved to Khayelitsha with his grandmother to escape his violent, alcoholic grandfather.
The dusty ghettos of the Cape Flats are notorious around the world for their harsh conditions, rampant poverty and crime. These are conditions where only the strong and determined survive.
Music was one way for Rattex to escape the grim realities of ghetto life. In 1994, he formed Maniac Squad with MAD (Man After Dollar). Middle Finga and Saqwiti joined in 1995 to round off this now-legendary Khayelitsha super crew.
Rattex is now at the forefront of the new school of proudly South African rappers who understand that Hip Hop, more than any other musical art form, is about addressing important issues and representing where you’re from. It is therefore not suprising that Rattex is one of the pioneers of the ‘Spaza’ movement, where lyrics are performed in a combination of isiXhosa, English and Cape Flats slang.
Rattex has always been a true Cape Flats soldier, representing Khaltsha (Khayelitsha) wherever he performs. His music is always on heavy rotation on community and campus radio stations across South Africa. His music has also been played by DJ Edu on BBC 1Xtra in the UK. Video for Rattex’s tracks are regularly played on SABC’s Music Lounge, Channel O and MTV Base. Noteable performances include Transmusicales (FR), Paleo Festival (CH), Electron Festival (CH), Fusion Festival (DE), B-Sides Festival (CH), JazzParade (CH), Khayelitsha Festival (RSA), Fire on the Mountain Festival (RSA), Drudge Dialect II (RSA), Kool Out Live (RSA) and Party People (RSA). Rattex has also performed on Channel O’s number 1 rated show, Mzanzi Ridez. Rattex supported legendary Brooklyn-born super lyricist Wordsworth on his tour to South Africa.
Rattex caught the attention of producer Dplanet with his blazing and controversial verse on Battle of the Sexes which appeared on the Drudge Dialect compilation in 2006. Dplanet then featured Rattex on the Planetary Assault compilation album in 2007 where he killed verses on Township Storm and Imbadla Yez’rhumsha.
In 2008 Rattex signed with Pioneer Unit Records. His debut solo album, Bread and Butter was released on 15th October 2008. His follow-up EP, Streets, Raps & Us was released in August 2010.
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Rattex Artist Sheet (231k)
Rattex Hi-res Press Photos (2.79 MB)
Bread and Butter Press Kit (433k)
Press kit contains: Bio / Album artwork / B. Sharpa Press Release / Track List & Production Credits