Peter Rehberg, the British-Austrian founder of pioneering record label Editions Mego, has died aged 53.
As reported in The Guardian, Rehberg died of a heart attack. News of Rehberg’s passing was first shared by his collaborator François Bonnet, who records as Kassel Jaeger, and Bonnet’s label INA-grm.
Bonnet wrote on Instagram: “I am heartbroken. Peter is gone, suddenly. Just like that. He hated goodbyes, effusions. Out of reserve. Out of sensitivity. He was one of the most kind, loyal and reliable people I have ever known. I feel privileged to have known him, to have collaborated with him and to have been his friend. I owe him so much. So do many of us.”
He continued: “The last time I listened to him playing live, it was in Paris, February 2020, in a small venue, with an average sound system. His concert was great, though. I was really impressed. Each time, more and more impressed. Over the years, his music has become denser. It was still radical and bold, but it was also deeper, more ambivalent, more moving too. It revealed unfathomable depths.
“We sometimes forget how talented a musician Peter Rehberg was, because of so much energy he devoted to the music of others. But he was an amazing musician.”
Peter Rehberg (1968-2021) pic.twitter.com/rqZP3wDTAw
— INA grm (@Ina_GRM) July 23, 2021
— Ghostly (@ghostly) July 23, 2021
Beautiful, heartfelt words from François Bonnet on our dear friend Peter Rehberg who we suddenly lost yesterday. We are all absolutely heartbroken 💔 Please read: https://t.co/UhwpDUSghc
— Oren Ambarchi (@orenambarchi) July 23, 2021
RIP Peter Rehberg – a terrible loss to experimental music. As well as being a great musician himself, Peter supported the work of so many artists. His label Mego's influence will endure long into the future.
— Unsound (@unsound) July 23, 2021
I am so terribly saddened to hear of the death of my friend and fellow traveler Peter Rehberg. RIP. https://t.co/lztnlWPvDO
— JG Thirlwell (@jgthirlwell) July 23, 2021
Rehberg was born in Tottenham and raised in Hertfordshire before moving to his father’s native Austria.
An artist in his own right, Rehberg released many noise and ambient albums across a career that spanned 25 years, beginning with his debut LP, ‘Seven Tons For Free’, as Pita, in 1996. Some of his collaborators included Jim O’Rourke, Christian Fennesz, and Sunn O)))’s Stephen O’Malley.
In 1994, he worked in a management role at Austrian music label, Mego, which housed underground musicians and composers. Mego closed in 2005.
However, a year later, Rehberg relaunched the label as Editions Mego. Now a famed home for electronic music, it works with artists including Oneohtrix Point Never, Emeralds and Caterina Barbieri.
Rehberg is survived by his partner Laura Siegmund, his father Alexander, brother Michael and his daughter Natasha, from a previous relationship.