Music Review | posted 26.01.2012
Pete Swanson & Rene Hell
Waiting For The Ladies
Shelter Press, 2012
Text , Translation Julia Frohn
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Cover Pete Swanson & Rene Hell - Waiting For The Ladies

A year and a half ago, Pete Swanson and Rene Hell went on a tour along the U.S.A.‘s west coast in order to promote their record Waiting For The Ladies. Swanson had manufactured only a small number of the record all by himself and then sold them at the gigs. Now, the newly founded label Shelter Press has re-released the split-LP – not without cause. On the record, each of the artists was responsible for one side, and each recorded it in their very own ways. As one half of the Yellow Swans, Swanson had already rid his Noise of its monotony. Jeff Witscher (aka Rene Hell) has for some time now been held as the guru of the synths-avant-garde by worming almost surreal sounds out of his equipment. On Bending (Voice), one of his three tracks on the B-side, it sounds as if Witscher crawled into his instrument, only to come back out of it after almost half of the ten minutes playing time with sheer beauty in his hands. Because Witscher is not only sound-explorer, but also an excellent composer, which was seldom as obvious as in this very track. All in all, on these three tracks, Witscher shows his versatility which plausibly combines baroque organ-sounds, playful chamber-music and heavy drones. Swanson, on the other hand, uses the whole of his 15 minutes for his track Self-Help. It starts with heavy guitar-noise, a ruckus, which becomes rhythmized by and by. Sounds are being peeled, swallowed, then peeled again, other sounds come and go, lisp, rattle, squeak, come back and are released back into the wild, eventually. Sometimes, this all sounds somewhat strange, but never threatening, because Pete Swanson always has everything under control. He’s tamed the sounds.

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