November 30, 2015
At The Arts Club of Chicago
Johalla Projects presents Matchess in a one-night performance at the Arts Club of Chicago. This program will fuse elements of contemporary classical music and modern experimental electronic music with a neo-new age mysticism as a response to Kerstin Brätsch: PELE’S CURSE. Much like Brätsch’s non-purist considerations of painting, Matchess’s richly ambient organ-based music deconstructs the medium as a means to create new formulas and to point to larger themes.
Matchess is the solo work of musician Whitney Johnson. The project considers the reproduction of sound and meaning through a range of historical material processes, including cassette tape sampling, live looping, and field recording. With the limited palette of a 1960s Ace Tone organ, viola, drum machine, and voice, she crafts a sound collage of ephemeral songs on a bed of droning ambient noise. Matchess invokes music of the past, including classical impressionism, sacred vocal organum, musique concrete, komische, and early electronic experiments, while referencing texts of the past, including French Symbolist poetry, science fiction metanarrative, and her own lyrical technique of the sigil mantra. In tandem with her music practice, she is a doctoral candidate in sociology at the University of Chicago, writing a dissertation on the valuation of cultural objects, particularly in the fields of sound art and experimental music.