Pete Beat is back with his latest album, The Strange Museum, a genre bending journey through elements of funk, electronica and untamed creativity. A prolific, self-taught and self-produced musician, Pete has written over 500 songs with no signs of slowing down. With several singles, EPs, and three albums already under his belt, Pete is gaining support and airplay on BBC 6 Music among others.
In a world where mental health struggles are often stigmatised, Pete uses the new album to given an open and honest account of his story of recovery from schizophrenia. With the album containing several tracks detailing his experience of being diagnosed and treated for the illness, Pete hopes to reduce the stigma surrounding schizophrenia by sharing his personal journey.
The focus track on The Strange Museum is “Sweet Elan”, a soulful and thought-provoking song about losing out on love. Written roughly eight years ago, the track talks about a person who loses out to another suitor over the course of a lifetime, up until their deathbed and witnessing the unrequited love among those gathered there. As Pete says, it’s hard to tell if this is a dream or not. “Sweet Elan” showcases Pete’s ability to capture complex emotions and create a moving listening experience.
A key theme in Pete’s music is the therapeutic, cathartic benefits of creativity. He credits music and songwriting with saving his life and helping him deal with the issues that led to his psychotic breakdowns. With The Strange Museum, Pete hopes to inspire others to use creativity as a form of therapy and to break down the stigma surrounding mental illness.
An emotional and personal journey through The Strange Museum, the album is a testament to the power of music, both as a tool of expression but also as a cathartic healing process in overcoming health struggles and trauma.
Speaking about the album, Pete shares:
“The name of the album The Strange Museum is a description of the psychiatric hospital I was detained in back in 2010. In my elevated state the whole place seemed magical and otherworldly, and the album cover art is my attempt at rendering that. The album contains several tracks (which weren’t singles) which describe this experience in more detail, from arriving at the hospital, to the buildup of the delusions I was suffering from, and the diagnosis of schizophrenia. Ultimately the album is a testament to the fact that you can in many cases fully recover from mental illness. I’d credit the creative process of writing and recording music as a very big factor in my recovery.”