Belle Chen might well be classical music’s secret weapon – a non-cooler, multi-platform polymath who has travelled the world, soaking up influences both musical and emotional and pouring out the results in a series of albums which work as a kind of travelogue time capsule.
Mademoiselle is her most personal work to date, seeing Belle journey to Paris at a particularly difficult point in her life and locking herself away in an appartment for 3 days, the results being a stunning collection of deeply-affecting soundscapes which have a futuristic, electronic edge yet display all her outstanding skills as a pianist.
Along with her producer, Iain Chambers, she spent the following six months painstakingly manipulating the sounds, incorporating the reversed sounds of instruments as well as taking a very musicque concrete approach to arranging each track. The end result is an album which draws you in and refuses to let go. Each listen reveals further textures and patterns and lingers long after you’ve finished listening.
Championed as one to watch by electronic grandmaster Brian Eno and with support from BBC Radio 3, 6Music and Classic FM, Belle Chen is at the forefront of the nu-classical movement, aiming to intrigue, surprise and inspire both listeners familiar with the worlds of classical and electronica and those new to the genres.