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Emperor X / The Expos / Weird Radicals / Raquel Denis

Emperor X: Chad Matheny, who Alternative Press described as "a spastic, legally blind, nomadic songwriter whose performances transform venues/living rooms/arts spaces into punk rock micro-raves," has been releasing music under the Emperor X moniker since 1998. His recordings and live shows fuse the punk songwriter tradition of Billy Bragg with the experimental tape loop minimalism of William Basinski, and reveal incurable obsessions with transportation infrastructure, modernist literature, and lo-fi Chicago house tracks. Consequences of Sound called the resulting twelve critically-accalimed albums and EPs "a radical, challenging, and sometimes baffling discography."

Matheny lives in Berlin, where he helps operate Donau115, a small venue central to the Neukölln neighborhood's booming experimental jazz scene, and volunteers as a music technology instructor for a German NGO focused on supporting young refugees. In addition to his label home of Tiny Engines, he has worked with several American and international labels including Bar/None Records, Burnt Toast Vinyl, Plan-It-X Records, the German/American label The Bomber Jacket, and the Portuguese/German/Lithuanian multimedia collective Mouca.

Local love...

The Expos: Youngblood shreddy-type pop-punk.

Weird Radicals: Textured garagey-pop.

Raquel Denis: Slightly jazzy singer-songwriter.