Peter Swanson

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  • Los Angeles, California

Artist Biography

Since the early 2000s, Peter Swanson has released more CDRs, tapes and vinyl records than most countries release postage stamps. As a member of cult noise duo Yellow Swans, he amassed a worldwide following of noise fans swayed by the duo's clamorous beats and screech combo and ability to carry their sound live just as much as they did on record. As a solo artist Swanson has continued to deliver, but unsurprisingly has been able to explore far more ground tonally. Whether tangling with the kind of corrupted rock you'd most likely find on a Keiji Haino album (see I Don’t Rock At All) or the sandblasted Surgeon-indebted 4/4 crunch of Man With Potential, Swanson has proved he can leave an indelible mark on any genre he tips his hat to. Not only that, he can make it his own; whether warbling incoherently, tackling an axe or wrestling with a synthesizer there's always a sense that you're listening to Peter Swanson. Maybe it's the density, the saturation, the signature tape hiss – whatever it is, you have the sense that there’s a veteran at work, and Swanson's insatiable appetite for innovation is something we can all rely on.

Selected Press

With his most recent solo album, Man With Potential, Swanson has produced his first solo masterpiece. Its core is instantly recognizable as Swanson: wild, entirely improvised electronics wrought out of erratic hardware, then looped and edited into a whole of preternatural depth and musicality.

Kiran Sande, Fact Magazine

It might sound paradoxical, but there really is a meditative aspect to Swanson's flying noise. That's not surprising given his history of infusing all kinds of sounds with Zen-like serenity.

Marc Masters, Pitchfork

Well into a fruitful solo career after the collapse of one of noise music's most beloved bands, Pete Swanson isn't "going" anywhere but his own scorched-earth path. If you can withstand the heat, it's probably worth following him for a bit.

Andrew Ryce, Resident Advisor