Ruben Machtelinckx is a prominent member of the Belgian and European improvised, experimental music scene. As a guitarist, but equally as a composer. Since the very start of his artistic course, he focusses on personal projects.
He has released 10 records as a bandleader including musicians like Arve Henriksen, Ingar Zach, Nils Økland, Hilmar Jensson, Joachim Badenhorst, Frederik Leroux, Niels van Heertum, Toma Gouband, Øyvind Skarbo and Thomas Jillings.
In 2013 the quartet Machtelinckx/Badenhorst/Jensson/Wouters released their debut, ‘Faerge’. The album was praised by international press and was listed ‘Best Belgian jazz release’ by KNACK magazine. Later the band issued a second album, ‘Flock’.
For many years, Machtelinckx is part of Linus, a duo with saxophone player Thomas Jillings. Their lauded debut, ‘Onland’, was followed by very specific collaborations. The duo remained, but other textures and musicians were added. For records were released since: the first in collaboration with Frederik Leroux and Øyvind Skarbø, the second with Nils Økland and Niels Van Heertum, the third and fourth again with Nils Økland and Niels Van Heertum but also complemented by Ingar Zach.
As a sideman he plays in bands like Veder, Ifa y Xango and Book of Air. As freelance musician he played with Peter Evans, Iva Bittova, Jakob Bro, Christian Wallumrød, Dré Pallemaerts and many others.
In general Machtelinckx’ music has evolved from sweet and gentle melodies and folk influences to music with more frictions and a hidden discomfort, without however letting go the power of songs and strains.
In 2017 he was one of the co-founders of Aspen Edities, an independent record label for contemporary music that issues both improvised music and compositions, often combined in a peculiar interplay.
In 2020 he won the KLARA award for Best Belgian Jazz release with the album Porous Structures.