You’d expect a musician signed to Jai Paul’s Paul Institute to reflect the label boss’ legendary mysterious air, but Ruthven is his own artist. Formed in 2016 by Jai and his brother AK, The Paul Institute maintained the siblings’ ruthlessly sparse release schedule and showed the many fans of Paul’s sound where his chosen bandmates could take him. In Ruthven’s case, he shared songs with particular warmth; If the artists at the Paul Institute create futuristic spaceships disguised as pop songs, Ruthven feels like opening the doors to the module bay and inviting you in.
This quality was a recurring theme in the four singles Ruthven released even as he pushed his sound into new territory. “Evil,” his debut song, introduced Ruthven as an 80s electronic funk enthusiast and on “Hypothalamus,” he nodded. to the influence of Jai Paul while demonstrating its important capacity for tension and relaxation. 2021 saw the release of two new songs: the “Don’t Keep It To Yourself” and “123 Days”, where bright synth chirps and a mix of acoustic and electronic drums conspire to form a song that would probably make Lionel go. Richie. cartoon wolf howls.
If Ruthven’s releases sound like curation, it may have something to do with his history as a wedding reception DJ. When he wasn’t a firefighter, Ruthven created playlists for newly married couples and their friends to dance the night away. “100% it influenced my writing decision-making process,” Ruthven tells me in an email. While it’s going to be a while before wedding season returns, we asked Ruthven to give us a pick of her favorite wedding reception songs. As with his own music, he kept us guessing. “I don’t want to have just a list of bait that any 70s soul lover could easily put together,” he wrote. “There will be a few alternatives!”