every one of them

When anyone speaks of Belgian music in the nineties, the Antwerp scene is something which simply cannot be ignored. When someone speaks of the Antwerp scene, one man simply cannot be ignored either- Rudy Trouvé. He has been in one of the most successful Belgian bands ever- dEUS, and beside that, he’s also a very important player in various less popular, but equally praised bands.

Born in Wilrijk in 1967, he grew up with two brothers (Alfred and Carlo) and a sister (Sonia), who all had artistic aspirations as well. Rudy went to art school in Lier, and later on he studied animation in Ghent. In 1991, 24 years old, Rudy moved into an old brothel somewhere around Antwerp, where he was joined by Jacki Billet, Dirk Belmans and from time to time other people as well. They called that place Heavenhotel. In the period they lived there, they made all sorts of art; drawings, paintings, video-experiments and music. Several bands were set up in those days, of which Kiss My Jazz was the most famous. A few years later, Rudy left the Heavenhotel to live on his own.

In the 1993 he joined Tom Barman and Stef Kamil Carlens in their band dEUS, which he would leave later on in 1995. In the meanwhile Rudy was also in several other bands, all with their very own and distinctive sound. Ranging from traditional rock bands to ‘avant-garde’ jazz outings, not two bands ever sounded alike. If there’s one thing they all had in common, it the lo-fi approach (partly because of financial limitations) and the total artistic freedom the bands enjoyed, not being dependent on big commercial record companies.

Beside his bands, Rudy Trouvé is also a painter- just look at the covers of some of his records to get an idea. Besides painting, he also did a 50-minute experimental video film in 1996, called Dave’s great idea, which was never commercially released.

When releasing his first non-dEUS cds, Rudy Trouvé set up a new label which he named after the Heavenhotel brothel, where several of his bands originated. The Heavenhotel label has released over 20 cds and vinyls as we speak, on which Rudy Trouvé had important or modest creative roles in most.

His musical influences lie within Marc Ribot, Sebadoh, Françoise Hardy, Dinosaur Jr., Brigitte Fontaine, Louis Neefs, Chet Baker, Nick Drake, Motorpsycho, the fifties underground New York jazz scene, among dozens of others.
The man’s technical abilities are pretty limited though; he has no technical background for his guitar playing, neither for directing a film. Yet somehow he manages to let his audience totally ignore his limitations, all baffled with his sheer dedication, enthusiasm, and refreshingly anarchistic spirit.

Rudy Trouvé is at the very least one of the most influencal Belgian musicians from the nineties, although his true importance will only get clear in ten years’ time or so. In the first decade of 2000 several bands will certainly pop up, getting their inspiration from Rudy’s wonderful music.
For now, all we can do is sit back and enjoy.