“As both an avant-garde composer and a baroque lutenist, the Dutch musician Mr van Wissem is no stranger to dichotomy.”
The New York Times
His music is uncluttered and direct, with a viscerally hypnotic and emotional impact and delivered with an ascetic intensity reflected in his biblical titles Long form graceful melodies create a transcendental pastoral world and minimalist mirror images are repeated in order to slow the act of listening. An incessantly touring musician, Van Wissem’s intense live shows have taken him all over the world and he has performed at festivals like All Tomorrow’s Parties and Primavera Sound.
Van Wissem studied lute in New York City with Pat O’Brien. He lectures on “The Liberation of the Lute” and was commissioned by London’s National Gallery to compose a sound piece to Hans Holbein’s painting The Ambassadors. He is in a duo with Jim Jarmusch and is currently scoring his vampire film Only Lovers Left Alive. For the Mystery Of Heaven release ( on Sacred Bones Records) they worked with Tilda Swinton. Van Wissem composed and performed lute and voice pieces for the Sims Medieval video game and he is writing more and more for cinema. A one of a kind black lute was especially build for him and is featured on his solo release Nihil Obstat. He lives in Brooklyn.