This trajectory is less surprising when you consider that he was almost on stages before he could walk. His father directed one of Norway’s few gospel choirs, and as a three-year-old Peder developed an obsession with Kirk Franklin and jazz, before an American exchange student got him hooked on Eminem and rap from across the pond, aged ten.
Looking past his Scandinavian confines, and the pop-punk or Britney that his friends sought out, it was the gospel influences of Kanye’s ‘The College Dropout’ and J Dilla’s bounce that put Lido firmly onto hip-hop’s melodic side.
Entirely self-taught, Peder quickly became a piano prodigy and excelled on the drums. He got to grips with production at the age of ten using a “very bad music programme on my dad’s laptop — I think it was called ‘Band in a Box’!”
From then he began to produce beats, way before he fully understood what he was creating. This isolation produced a unique quality in his music, since there was no-one to show him how it was done. “Out of necessity I became a one-man band,” he explains. “Jumping from instrument to instrument was natural for me because I didn't know that you weren't supposed to do that! I thought all rappers made their own beats.” he says.
But these “weird electronic songs” were for Peder’s own enjoyment until his friend Cashmere Cat introduced him to DJ Slow, who signed him to his Pelican Fly label in an instant. “[Slow] was like, “Hey, you know that people like this kind of stuff, right? You know there are clubs where they play this kind of music?! I had no idea, but he showed me that scene.”
It was through a series of remixes that Lido catapulted into the sets of the most high-profile DJs around the globe, capturing the ears of numerous notable tastemakers. Reworking acts like Disclosure and Bill Withers, the producer set the Internet ablaze with talk of his four-note piano tag and speculation as to who was underneath the moniker. While his playful, restless musicality saw him adopt an array of aliases — but he’ll keep those under wraps for now.
Debuting on Pelican Fly with 2014’s ‘I Love You’ EP, followed by the ‘Superspeed’ EP, and remixes of Banks, Alt-J and MØ, Lido’s anti-formulaic style emerged. His tracks bounce from one idea to another voraciously, but always with that clear Lido stamp. You don’t just get a drum and a bassline on a track of his; you’re more likely to get an entire string or brass section that elevates his sound to cinematic heights.
In the last year and a half, Lido has embarked on a sold-out US tour, produced for Chance the Rapper and A$AP Ferg, while also executive producing Halsey’s ‘Badlands’. More recently, Kanye’s ‘The Life of Pablo’ inspired him to chuck the album into a blender for an eight-minute reimagining; the irresistible ‘Life of Peder’.
Lido dropped his debut album ‘Everything’ to critical acclaim in October 2016. The recording process was born from a difficult period in Peder’s life. “It’s an unconventional breakup album,” he starts. “It’s not an album about a girl, it’s an album because of a girl — my healing process after losing somebody that meant a lot to me. It’s called ‘Everything’ because it's the story of when you let somebody be everything to you, you risk losing that everything and being left with just yourself.”
Lead single ‘Crazy’ melts Daft Punk heat into Zapp & Roger talkbox magic, with Peder blasting his signature rising, HudMo-style chords. But ‘Everything’ doesn’t just explore the uplifting side of emotion. “I wanted to explore the nuances of feelings — there's so much energy in sadness, anger in sadness, there's frustration in sadness.” he explains. “I wanted to explore how I can make emotional music that’s more complicated than what people usually do when they try to tell a story.”
Each track makes up an intricate chapter of his story, which he’s keen for fans to unpack themselves, and as a result it was “such a scary album for me,” he says. “It's so emotional, and so honest.” Featuring vocals from Lido’s good friend Jaden Smith, Vic Mensa and a 12-year-old Norwegian kid who he’s mentoring, each voice represents a different side of Lido’s character.
Lido’s own vocals (his “third instrument”, as he calls them) crop up too on the album, becoming instruments rather than sung lines. “It’s not a traditional album where you have verses and choruses and lyrics that are understandable and that you can sing along to,” he explains.
On a whim, he decided to debut the entire album at this year’s Coachella, where he brought out Jaden on stage with him for what was essentially a giant listening party, to give his audience the full narrative. “Performing all unheard music to a crowd that’s there to party was nerve racking, to be completely honest with you,” he admits.
But as someone who can turn his hand to a huge number of instruments, Lido is far from being one of the crop of EDM producers who simply press play on stage. “I'm more confident and more in my element when I'm on a stage rather than anywhere else,” he says. His live show is something to witness; where he flits from drums to keys, sometimes even backed by an orchestra and strong visual arrangements.
With such an unquenchable appetite for composition and performing, it’s clear that the future is going to be very bright for Lido.