Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Robert Rutman / U.s. Steel Cello Ensemble-Bitter Suites,LP,1979,USA

Robert Rutman (Berlin, 1931) went to the USA to study art in 1955. In 1975, he started building steel-metal sculptures to be played with a bow, like a violin, and founded the U.S. Steel Cello Ensemble. 1939 (Pogus, 1990) documents some of these resonating sculptures and their ghostly drones: Tabla and buzz chime, Steel cello and bow chime, Chant bow chime and horn, Three bow chimes, Song of the steel cello.
After a long hiatus, new compositions began to appear on Music To Sleep By (Tresor, 1998), Song Of The Steel Cello (Pogus, 1999), that contains the title-track, Zuuhh Muttie Mum (1999).

This is a recording of a concert by Robert Rutman and his steel cello's recorded sometime in the late 70's at a New York Art Gallery. If you are unfamiliar with the Steel Cello Ensemble, it's basically a few people playing large sheets of metal which produce totaly amazing, spooky, droning outer-space sounds. Very much in the same league as Bertoia's sound sculptures.
get it here


FM SHADES said...

glad your spreading this one. I ripped this a few years back from vinyl and scanned the images... A old friends dad gave me that Lp... Its pretty beautiful sounding!

Anonymous said... this extraordinary LP from FM SHADES. Great, great music! Thanks...

Anonymous said...

What an absolute blessing to hear this, two months ago i was finally able to hear Panhuysen's "Long String Installations" & now THIS!!!
i feel spoiled, yet so complete—just got through two straight sittings of this magnificent work. It's still resonating in my brain, in fact my brain feels cleaner?
(or) split in two. i Love You Mutant Sounds, you shall be rewarded tenfold in the afterlife.
panagiotis A. stathis

Brennan Cavanaugh said...

Really wonderful searing ambient drone, reminding me of with Ellen Fullman whose gallery-long string 'instrument' performance I caught in Memphis in the late 80's.

Anonymous said...


First of all, thanks again for all the intersting music I downloaded thanks to you.

Maybe you know a track by a German band that was played by John Peel in 1983 or 1984... An electronic new-wave track called Ventilator. I had it on a cassette and lost it. If someone reading this knows anything, please drop me a note at


Jim P. said...

I used to work at the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston and in 2006 they started getting rid of their vinyl collection, this LP was one I found in a box in the break room marked "FREE". Wild stuff!