Issei Herr uses the vast sound-world of the cello to expose openness, vulnerability, and a sense of wonder in her intricately looped and layered compositions. On her debut album Distant Intervals, released in Spring 2023 on NNA Tapes, Issei distills her musical memories as a classically-trained performer and weaves together bold new narratives, centered on themes of possibility, becoming, and transformation. Upon its release, the album received critical praise and attention from platforms such as Bandcamp Daily (as Album of the Day), Stereogum, Our Culture, New Sounds, I Care If You Listen, Foxy Digitalis, and Them, and landed in the Top 10 of the Billboard Classical Crossover charts. Her live performance highlights include opening for Geotic at Public Records in NYC, and shows in Los Angeles, Tokyo, and Boston.
Trained as a classical cellist at Juilliard, Issei began her performance career as a collaborator - featuring as a solo cellist in live performances of Rachika Nayar’s Our Hands Against the Dusk, and premiering a solo cello work by Nico Muhly, amongst many other collaborations. She was also recently featured on a track by experimental hip-hop producer and rapper Decuma.