Audrey Chen & Kaffe Matthews – Breathing air as dark swallows

All new file exchange mind-melter from 2nd generation Chinese/Taiwanese-American musician Audrey Chen & British electroacoustic artist Kaffe Matthews:

"Breathing air as dark swallows was made during the three month COVID-19 lockdown period in Berlin 2020. Kaffe and I decided to embark on a music exchange after participating in a chain recording project isolated.connected initiated by Sabine Vogel. The first track of this album is the result of that, our first sonic meeting, inspired by prior recordings by Sabine and Michael Thieke. We then decided to continue the process by taking it in turns to send each other improvised solos to which the other would respond, producing four highly tactile and intimate breathing movements. Kaffe plays digital oscillators through a glu-box, whilst processing through resampling and granulation. Spatialization is via the pink ball Java interface and Touch OSC. I use my voice." - Audrey Chen


Audrey Chen & Kaffe Matthews - voice & live electronics


Recorded and mixed by Kaffe Matthews, Audrey Chen and Henrik Munkeby Nørstebø, April to June 2020.
Mastered by Tara Transitory and Nguyễn Baly at Queer Ear Mastering
Cover image by Götz Rogge - camera obscura art 

1 - [09:16]

2 - [10:14]

3 - [12:32]

4 - [10:17]

Audrey Chen

Audrey Chen is a Chinese-American musician who was born into a family of material scientists, doctors and engineers, outside of Chicago in 1976. Parting ways with the family convention, she turned to the cello at age 8 and voice at 11. After years of classical and conservatory training in both instruments, with a resulting specialization in early and new music, she parted ways again in 2003 to begin new negotiations with sound in order to discover a more individually honest aesthetic. Now, using the cello, voice and analog electronics, Chen’s work delves deeply into her own version of narrative and non-linear storytelling. A large component of her music is improvised and her approach to this is extremely personal and visceral. Her playing explores the combination and layering of a homemade analog synthesizer, preparations and traditional and extended techniques in both the voice and cello. She works to join these elements into a singular ecstatic personal language. Over the past decade, her predominant focus has been her solo work with the cello, voice and electronics, but she has more recently begun to shift back towards the exploration of the voice as a primary instrument. Among musicians, she has worked with Phil Minton, Tetuzi Akiyama, Toshimaru Nakamura, Ko Ishikawa, Tomomi Adachi, Matana Roberts, Elliott Sharp, Aki Onda, Phill Niblock, Frederic Blondy, Jerome Noetinger, C. Spencer Yeh, Nate Wooley, Mats Gustafsson, Mazen Kerbaj, Michael Zerang, Tatsuya Nakatani, Le Quan Ninh, Joe Mcphee, Susan Alcorn, Michele Doneda, Paolo Angeli, Dylan Nyoukis, Id M Theft Able, plus many more. Recent projects, aside from performing solo, include her voice only duo with London based artist, Phil Minton and a collaborative project with German conceptual artist, John Bock. Two new album releases in 2013 include, a quartet LP with Nate Wooley, C. Spencer Yeh and Todd Carter on Monotype (Warsaw), and a duo record with Phil Minton on Subrosa (Brussels).