Kobe van Cauwenberghe
Toon Callier
Johannes Westendorp
Bruno Nelissen


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Line up

  • Bruno Nelissen (electric guitar)
  • Johannes Westendorp (electric guitar)
  • Kobe van Cauwenberghe (electric guitar)
  • Toon Callier (electric guitar)


One critic described the guitar quartet Zwerm as “exciting, sometimes alienating and always quirky”. Zwerm take modern electric guitars and pedals and time-travel back to the English renaissance. There -- armed with advanced performance gadgetry -- they tackle the works of Tallis, Dowland and others.

That may sound blasphemous, but hearing the result is to believe in something you scarcely thought possible: that pieces written centuries ago are reinvigorated by the same instruments Jimi Hendrix set on fire and Kurt Cobain smashed to bits.

Zwerm’s music is raw and indelicate. Their records unfold like documentaries, featuring a pastiche of ambient street noise, song samples and spoken texts over layered guitars. If composers like Byrd and Tavener couldn’t anticipate such a radical overhaul of their music, they surely wouldn’t have found it alienating. Zwerm are tinkerers who cracked the code of centuries-old music, and made it new again. Zwerm play the music of the past, the present, and the future, all at once.