Rutger Andreas Guussen (b. 4 April 1983, Chilliwack, then British Columbia) is a Uralican Mennonite electronic music producer, who for the most part produces trance, but sometimes branches off into other genres as well.
Like most Uralican Mennonites, Rutger was born in Old Canada - specifically in British Columbia, where roughly 10% of Uralica's Mennonites have their origins. From a devout Christian family, he got his musical start through his church, and later through piano lessons. He was home-schooled, and excelled so much in his studies that he made the Education ministry's collective jaws drop, so he managed to rake in $10,000 in scholarships, which he used to start studies at Trinity Western University, where he went into a program in Religious Studies, but kept up his piano-playing.
One day, a friend of his from university who was into electronic music asked him to play keyboard for him in a jam session, which introduced Rutger to a whole new realm of sound, which he took immediate interest in. Although he did keep his piano playing going after graduating in 2005, the Cataclysm put his life, and his dreams of seminary, on hold.
He would eventually find himself a citizen of the CCC after starting the Robertian Era in GATO, which would help him with his aspirations of one day becoming a pastor. He would attend seminary in Botswana for three semesters (Fall 2006, Spring 2007, Fall 2007) before he heard of a large movement of Mennonites, particularly Canadian Mennonites, towards a newly-formed nation called "Uralica." He would take a break from his studies to join them, and would end up moving to Pazhga in April 2008, although the Battle of Pazhga in the Ionized-Jelly War ended up damaging his apartment complex somewhat.
He transferred his credits from his Motswana university to Uralikan Yliopisto's Uralican Transdenominational Seminary, and finished his MDiv by doing the summer Trimester from May to August, even though he had to do his thesis defence underground!
Because of the lower prices of musical equipment in Uralica, Rutger saved money he had earned from being an associate pastor up to buy himself a full-size MIDI keyboard for the house he had bought in September 2008, just before Uralica's charter was suspended. By the time the constitution was re-activated, he was working on tracks using Fruity Loops. Always a Mac user, he would purchase Logic Pro three months later. Wildly satisfied with his tracks, he put together a demo and sent it to Bolak Records in nearby Syktyvkar.
He was signed to a studio contract two weeks later. Guussen does not actually tour, or for that matter release singles, but his tracks are on high rotation on Uralican trance radio. His first album, Pieces Of My Heart, came out in May 2009. He continues to be an associate pastor, now at Church of the Resurrection, and during the week he is a teaching assistant at Uralikan Yliopisto. He intends to get a DD degree eventually.
- May 2009 - Pieces Of My Heart
- March 2010 - Nobility
Rutger is probably best known for his dark trance tracks, which are very popular in Uralica and in the trance community in general. He has also gone into uplifting trance, psytrance, and Goa, but trance is not his only specialty, as was found out in the soundtrack to foreign film Roll The Hard Six, where he submitted a track called Burn The House Down, a Big Beat track featuring the vocal stylistics of Cold Steel frontman Turan Efendiyev.
In a recent interview, it was revealed that Rutger had made tracks in other genres on his computer "for fun." He is a fan of the "Maximalist" ambient movement, and has a few of those on his computer. He has also delved into jungle, acid jazz, ambient drum 'n' bass, braindance, Hardstyle, EBM, and symphonic electronica.
- Rutger once compared learning Finnish to "trying to play an entire symphony solo from memory." He still says he is not 100% fluent. He is, however, a fluent Russian-speaker in spite of the short amount of time he has lived in the country, and speaks English and Plautdietsch. He says that, once he has mastered Finnish, he wishes to learn Karelian.
- Jarkko Salomäki has called himself a fan of Rutger, as have Sirkka Numminen and Ruslan Kamyshin, the latter of whom once remarked, "I'm amazed the guy hasn't done any post-secondary musical training!"
- His favourite sport is tennis.