There are few musicians more special and charmingly idiosyncratic than Matt Butler, the founder and conductor of Everyone Orchestra, which takes the art of improvisation to new levels. But rather than some heady technical exercise, Butler has found a way to make the experience thrilling for players and onlookers alike. EO performances are like visits to a colorful playground for one’s ears – there’s so much to climb on and explore and the sun beats down or the winds blow ferociously or…well, it’s never clear where anyone is going or how we’ll get there, only that the journey is going to be a freakin’ blast time and again. In the more than a dozen EO concerts Dirty Impound has witnessed there have been too many moments to note every single time – solos of such power or beauty they take your breath away, simply lunatic changes and modulations that defy logic, or even segments that felt so together that it seemed they must have been composed and rehearsed beforehand. When so much music being generated today feels like a rehash of the past, Everyone Orchestra, under Butler’s inspired guidance, reminds us of music’s endless possible permutations.
Butler has taken this previously only-live-onstage experience into the studio for the first time and is working on getting the finishing funds to bring the album into the world. The Brooklyn Sessions features EO veterans Jon Fishman (Phish), Jeff Coffin (Dave Matthews Band), Al Schnier (moe.), Reed Mathis (Tea Leaf Green), Steve Kimock, Marco Benevento, Jennifer Hartswick (Trey Anastasio Band), Jamie Masefield (Jazz Mandolin Project) and Jans Ingber (The Motet). Check out this Kickstarter video and definitely pop over here to watch a cool mini-documentary that talks to just some of the hyper-gifted musicians who’ve participated in EO, including King Crimson’s Adrian Belew and Tony Levin. It’s a worthy cause and if you feel so inclined you can chip in here. The Kickstarter campaign has only about 60 hours left to make up the remaining funds, so jump on over asap if the spirit moves you.