*9/For years J. Peter Schwalm‘s compositions and productions have been impressive proof of the power of sound without words. More consistent than ever, on his new album How We Fall, he creates sound sculptures that transcend common categories. Their structures can take on rough or gently curved forms, unfold associative or contemplative effects, and may even make the listener shiver. Schwalm’s feel for nuances, tension arcs and individual sounds is based on talent and many years of experience.
From 1998 J. Peter Schwalm worked continuously with Brian Eno for six years, together they released the album Drawn From Life, wrote the soundtrack to Nicolas Winding Refn‘s feature film Fear X, gave celebrated concerts in Europe and Japan. Since 2006 Schwalm has been a regular guest at the Punktfestival in Kristiansand, Norway, where he distinguished himself and elsewhere as one of the few experienced live remixers, among others for members of the widely acclaimed Ensemble Modern. In spring 2016 Schwarm’s last album The Beauty Of Disaster was released. Artistically, it revolved around a duality that shapes the visual arts and music as well as life itself: a certain melancholy that is always inherent in hope.
Schwalm had already distinguished himself through profound compositions and generally stood for rather dark facets of orchestral electronic music. In autumn 2016, an existential experience of illness was added, leaving deep traces. Schwalm nevertheless set to work under this impression, partly weakened by the inevitably following treatment.
Over the course of the year, pieces were created that reflect feelings such as restlessness, fear, despair and anger, but artistically process these emotions into abstract sounds, with that high degree of willingness to style and design that characterised Schwalm’s earlier productions.