Ruben van Dijk

Music writer

Netherlands

๐—™๐—ฟ๐—ฒ๐—ฒ๐—น๐—ฎ๐—ป๐—ฐ๐—ฒ (๐—บ๐˜‚๐˜€๐—ถ๐—ฐ) ๐˜„๐—ฟ๐—ถ๐˜๐—ฒ๐—ฟ ๐—ฎ๐—ป๐—ฑ ๐—ฐ๐—ผ-๐—ณ๐—ผ๐˜‚๐—ป๐—ฑ๐—ฒ๐—ฟ ๐—ผ๐—ณ ๐—™๐—ฟ๐—ผ๐—ป๐˜ (๐—ณ๐—ฟ-๐—ป๐˜.๐—ป๐—น) ๐˜„๐—ถ๐˜๐—ต ๐—ฎ ๐—ฝ๐—ฒ๐—ป๐—ฐ๐—ต๐—ฎ๐—ป๐˜ ๐—ณ๐—ผ๐—ฟ ๐—บ๐—ฎ๐˜‚๐—ฑ๐—น๐—ถ๐—ป ๐—ฐ๐—ผ๐˜„๐—ฏ๐—ผ๐˜†๐˜€ ๐—ฎ๐—ป๐—ฑ ๐—ฏ๐—ถ๐—ฟ๐—ฑ๐˜€๐—ผ๐—ป๐—ด. ๐—ช๐—ถ๐—น๐—น ๐—ผ๐—ป๐—ฒ ๐—ฑ๐—ฎ๐˜† ๐˜„๐—ฟ๐—ถ๐˜๐—ฒ ๐—ฎ ๐—ฏ๐—ผ๐—ผ๐—ธ ๐—ผ๐—ป ๐——๐—ฎ๐˜ƒ๐—ถ๐—ฑ ๐—•๐—ฒ๐—ฟ๐—บ๐—ฎ๐—ป.

Also available for (artist) biographies, translation gigs, editing, and copywriting (in both Dutch and English). Feel free to shoot me a Twitter DM or reach out at [email protected]

Portfolio
Front
07/27/2022
Infinitely open, Emily Sprague (Florist) is home again

Silence is myth on the fourth Florist album - simply titled Florist - a sci-fi concoction. Because after years of being alone, quiet, and detached, singer Emily Sprague realized that that's no way of living. And so instead, the first full-band album in five years by the New York folk band is a celebration...

Front
04/01/2022
No time is of the essence for Jeremiah Chiu & Marta Sofia Honer

Experimental composer / modular synthesiser guru Jeremiah Chiu and viola virtuoso Marta Sofia Honer had been living and playing together for many years, but it took an impromptu adventure to a place without time for the two to finally collaborate on a full-length LP.

Front
02/16/2022
Big Thief is its own ecosystem

After each having had time to reflect and branch off on solo endeavours, the force of nature that is Big Thief reconvened in the summer of 2020 for a months-long series of sprawling recording sessions, fielding a total of 45 finished tracks โ€“ 20 of which now appear on Dragon New Warm Mountain I Believe In You. Having spoken to guitarist Buck Meek, Ruben van Dijk writes about a band that exists on a very different earth.

Personal Essay
01/03/2022
Time to find a new creature to be

"Time has come now to stop being human Time to find a new creature to be Be a fish or a weed or a sparrow For the earth has grown tired and all of your time has expired" I had been travelling for...

Front
02/15/2022
Fuubutsushi is listening intently

Fuubutsushi was only ever meant to be a one-off; an album made through Zoom and Dropbox at the height of the pandemic by four musicians - Matthew Sage, Chris Jusell, Chaz Prymek, and Patrick Shiroishi - who had never been in a room together. Just for the sake of it.

Front
08/23/2021
Hold stasis: learning to love the uneventful through ambient music

A year and a half ago, as the world came to a sudden standstill and daily life turned into a slow and uneventful ordeal, Front editor Ruben van Dijk found himself looking for music that captured exactly that. Now, as life is slowly inching towards relative normalcy, he reflects on the sounds that helped him reconcile with all-encompassing nothingness and mind-numbing isolation by highlighting the artists responsible: Green-House, Ben Seretan and Elori Saxl.

Front
04/13/2021
Moments can be monuments: Cassandra Jenkins sees David Berman everywhere

Cassandra Jenkins had only known David Berman, leader of cult favourite Silver Jews, for a couple of days. Berman, her, and a number of other musicians were rehearsing to bring his latest record to life on stage. For at least two months of touring, they would be Purple Mountains โ€“ or โ€˜David Berman and His Handsome Grandkidsโ€™, as he jokingly called the ensemble โ€“ had Berman not taken his own life, mere days before the first show. For Jenkins, this sudden loss, and the events that followed,...

Front
04/08/2020
Ored Recordings is bringing traditional music from the Caucasus into the here and now

As a teenager, Bulat Khalilov had a strong dislike for the culture he grew up in. Now, his record label Ored Recordings is one the standard bearers of traditional folk music from the Caucasus. In recent years he's visited ethnic groups across the region to make field recordings of their deep-rooted musical traditions. What started out as naive curiosity about "cool" folk music, has become an impassioned mission to breathe new life into the traditional music of the Caucasus.

Front
11/13/2020
Subroutine Records celebrates its anniversary: stoic and full of passion for fifteen years

Fifteen years ago, in the summer of 2005, the journey began for VERA volunteers Niek Hofstetter and Koen ter Heegde. Record label Subroutine Records sees the light of day with an EP by fellow Groningen artist and musician friend AWKWARD i. The label has since become an indispensable part of the Dutch alternative music landscape. Despite both men not having earned a single dime for all those years. โ€œBut if we hadnโ€™t done this, weโ€™d be playing football.โ€

Front
02/01/2021
Everything slowly: Buck Meek finds peace in rituals

Big Thief has always been a unique live band, but with a performance with Stephen Colbert in October 2019, the foursome proved once again how magical the sum of its parts is. Each band member draws the eye in their own way, seemingly living entirely in their own dream world and yet the interplay is unimaginably intimate. After solo albums by Adrianne Lenker and James Krivchenia last year, it is now guitarist Buck Meek's turn to show how his dream world sounds outside the context of Big Thief....