Punk jazz? Why the f**k not!
Look up punk jazz in the dictionary and next to it you’ll find a picture of its patron saint Mike Dillon. The vibraphonist/percussionist/vocalist/MC has been in perpetual motion for over 20 years now. From his time spent with the late ’80s MTV buzz band Billy Goat to cult faves Hairy Apes BMX to his current role in the post rock behemoth Garage A Trois, Dillon has amassed a diehard fan base that embraces his freewheeling mash up of sound and style. On one hand he exudes the musical chops absorbed from countless hours spent with Milt Jackson records, on the other he thrashes about with visions of Iggy Pop hard-wired to his frontal cortex. In that spirit, his latest solo album, Urn, pushes the envelope even further. Assembling a new band from his current hometown of New Orleans, Dillon toured the group relentlessly for the first half of 2012 before ducking into a Kansas City recording studio and cutting the album straight to tape. The results are vibrational: “DVS” and “Ding Dong The Party Is Over” radiate with a ska pulse and surf punk abandon; “Leather On” is a definitive post modern freak anthem; “Saturn Returns” shows why Dillon was Les Claypool‘s perfect foil all those years in the Frog Brigade; “Cedar” slowly uncoils in a manic existential bender through India. Mike Dillon has made the rare album that can be both party starter turned up loud in the house and tweaked-out headphone record for the end of the night after everyone’s gone home. In all of its multi-dimensional glory, Urn cements Dillon’s reputation as an ever-intriguing cult music hero fearlessly forging his own path.
2. Leather On
3. Saturn Returns
4. Fluorescent Sunburn
6. Ding Dong The Party Is Over
7. River Is Burning
8. Sunny Is Drunk
Mike Dillon (aka Mike D) is a percussionist, vibraphonist, bandleader, vocalist and songwriter born in San Antonio, Texas. He is a member of Critters Buggin, Les Claypool’s Fancy Band and Garage A Trois. He has performed with many musicians including Ani DiFranco, Galactic, Brave Combo, Karl Denson’s Tiny Universe, Marco Benevento and New Orleans musicians Kevin O’Day, Johnny Vidacovich and James Singleton. Dillon also performed in the 80’s with local Dallas and Denton favorites Ten Hands.
He has led Dallas-based Billy Goat, Kansas City-based Malachy Papers and Austin-based Hairy Apes BMX (HABMX).
In 2006 Dillon started a funky project “Mike Dillon’s Go-Go Jungle” which included members of Billy Goat, drummer Go-Go Ray, and bassist, J.J. Jungle. The live Go-Go Jungle also performs songs from Dillon’s prior projects. They released their second CD entitled Rock Star Bench Press in 2009.
Dillon contributed the majority of compositions to Garage A Trois’ Power Patriot CD released in 2009.
Dillon and saxophonist Skerik perform as a trio called “The Dead Kenny G’s” with alternate third members. National tours have included keyboardist Brian Haas and bassist Brad Houser. With Houser they have also toured as “Critters Buggin Trio”. They released a CD entitled Bewildered Herd in 2009. As a trio with bassist James Singleton, Dillon and Skerik have toured as “Illuminasti” and as a trio with Les Claypool they have been billed as “The Fancy Trio”.
Dillon resides in New Orleans, Louisiana, but a busy touring schedule keeps him on the road much of the time