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Music: Emperor X

By Brian Baker · November 15th, 2011 · CityBeat Recommends
soundadvice_emperor_x_photo_jennifer hope mccharenPhoto: Jennifer Hope McCharen
In many instances, a guy with an acoustic guitar is likely to produce visions of James Taylor’s brilliant guitar work and melancholy song stylings or Paul Simon’s poetic magnificence, but Chad Matheny doesn’t operate in quite the same vein. Under the nom du rocque Emperor X, Matheny steps onto the platform of acoustic singer/songwriter with the hallucinogenic imagery of Syd Barrett, the Emo romanticism and powerful undercurrent of Chris Carrabba and the swirling disorientation of an unplugged and relatively sober Robert Pollard.

Although Matheny will often record with an assortment of supporting musicians making a variety of accompanying noises on traditional and non-traditional instruments, he is typically alone in the live setting, a man, his guitar, a handful of delays and other effects and a head full of heartfelt songs (or a heart full of headfelt songs, depending on the mood or the moon).

Hailing from the unlikely locale of Jacksonville, Fla., Matheny has been curating Emperor X as a musical art project for over a dozen years.

Emperor X plays Mayday Thursday. Go here to read Brian Baker's full Sound Advice.



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