Following a creative residency at La Becque, legendary electronic music duo Matmos, accompanied by sound artist Jeff Carey, presented a live multi-broadcast sound and light show on May 27 at Le Groove, Geneva, and a unique open-air quadraphonic performance on May 31 in the garden of La Becque, La Tour-de-Peilz, on the banks of Lake Geneva.
Based in Baltimore, Maryland, Matmos is known for its use of unusual samples. Since the 1990s, the duo, consisting of M.C. Schmidt and Drew Daniel, has been using all sorts of objects, sources, and sound materials, from the sound of pages of the Bible turning over to that of a police riot shield, to create conceptual and playful electronic productions that straddle the line between musique concrète, electroacoustics and dance music.
In the course of its career, the band has collaborated with many artists from different backgrounds, including The Kronos Quartet, Terry Riley, Marshall Allan (Sun Ra Arkestra), So Percussion, Yo La Tengo, Oneohtrix Point Never, Jefferson Friedman, David Tibet, Mouse on Mars, and Björk, with whom Matmos has worked on two albums and several world tours.
After using nothing but sounds generated by a washing machine on Ultimate Care II in 2016, recording Plastic Anniversary in a plastic recycling plant in Montana (in 2019) or collaborating with 99 musicians on The Consuming Flame: Open Exercises in Group Form (2020), the American duo borrowed the recordings of Polish avant-garde composer Bogusław Schaeffer for their latest LP, Regards/Ukłony dla Bogusław Schaeffer (2022).
For this return to Western Switzerland after an absence of more than 15 years, Matmos was accompanied by Jeff Carey. For more than 20 years, the American multidisciplinary artist has been showcasing intense immersive and sensory experiences in performances, acousmatic compositions, and sound and light installations that combine noise music with strobes and laser projections. Partner of the Geneva-based association Konnekt for numerous research projects on electronic extensions of acoustic instruments, Carey is also a programmer and curator.
Prior to their performance at La Becque, Matmos hosted a public discussion on their 25-year career and presented their last project based on the Smithsonian Folkways sound library.
Matmos and Jeff Carey at La Becque, photos Julien Gremaud, Aurélien Haslebacher and Pierre-Yves Mingard