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This website serves three purposes.

1) This website is a half-free blog. It documents the writing/recording/touring/living process, and includes journal entries, raw mixes, stems, drawings, DJ mixes, and essays on disparate but slant-related philosophical/political topics. A random 50% of the blog posts are visible to the public. The other posts sit behind a paywall and are visible only to supporters. All posts live here.

2) This website is a supporter community that I regularly interact with. People who enjoy the above media can easily talk to me and each other in the form of a locked ICQ-style chat and a locked Zoom-style video conference room. Like the locked posts, this function sits behind a paywall and is visible only to supporters. Get access here.

3) This website is my CV. People or organizations interested in hiring me can find information below about my previous work and my current composing / teaching / writing / audio engineering services. Write me if you have ideas about how we might work fruitfully together.

Services and Rates

Booking a Performance: No set fee. There is no set rate for booking me to perform at your event. If you or your organization would like to explore this possibility, write Laurin Rutgers to start the process.

Commissioning New Music / License Existing Music: No set fee. There is no set rate for commissioning me to compose new functional music and licensing my existing music for your project. If you or your organization would like to explore this possibility, write me to start the process.

Audio Engineering / Arranging / Production Consultation: €100 per track per service (bulk/project rates available). I arrange, record, mix, and master much of my own material and have worked with other artists as an engineer and collaborative producer in this capacity as well (see Autobiography below). Write me to let me know what you’d like to do together.

Learn Something / Get Help: €20 per 30-minute session. I am certified (PgCert) by the University of Sussex to teach at the tertiary level. I have years of experience providing one-on-one and group instruction in audio engineering, musical performance/composition/arrangement, writing, science, and mathematics. Write me to let me know what you’d like me to help you figure out.


Chad R. Matheny has been making music since 1998, often under the name Emperor X. A former STEM educator and physics graduate student, Matheny paused academic work and spent much of the past two decades crossing the world on buses and bullet trains to perform hundreds of concerts or compose in situ at locations ranging from a symphony hall in Portugal to the basement of a garden supply shop in Pittsburgh to an abandoned trade fair dome in northern Lebanon. He often tours alone with a guitar and synth, but sometime shares bills with fellow travelers including The Hotelier, The World is a Beautiful Place and I Am No Longer Afraid to Die, and most recently AJJ and Xiu Xiu. To date he has released ten albums and more than a dozen odd-format tour-only EPs and one-off singles. Music from some of these recordings appears in the soundtrack of the of the 2014 Warner Bros. film Veronica Mars and has been featured on national radio outlets including Rundfunk Berlin-Brandenburg in Germany and National Public Radio (three times) in the United States.

He co-produced the Sub Pop album Bits by jangle punk legends Oxford Collapse alongside Eric Topalski of Don Caballero and Storm & Stress. He has composed video soundtrack music for labor unions and non-profit organizations including Planned Parenthood and SEIU. In 2011 and 2012, Matheny’s ambient work Keeling Curve was used in a multimedia installation by photographer Joel Sternfeld that was featured in a retrospective exhibition at Museum Folkwang. In addition to his nascent cooperative label project Dreams of Field Recordings with The Hotelier’s Christian Holden, he has worked with several labels including Burnt Toast Vinyl, Tiny Engines, and Bar/None Records.

Matheny is a resident of Brieskow-Finkenheerd, a former East German power plant town east of Berlin on the Polish-German border. He is also one of the owner-operators of Donau115, an important node in Berlin’s active jazz/new music/songwriting scene.

CV || Photos