KCUR's Band Of The Week: Mike Dillon

Jul 12, 2017

An heir to the legacy of Frank Zappa, Mike Dillon is a musical satirist and acerbic provocateur.

Dillon's work has been documented in an extensive discography of unconventional jazz, rock and funk albums as a titanic figure in the outsider music scene. Currently based in New Orleans, Dillon — who performs at the Brick on Friday — once lived in Kansas City while performing in bands including the experimental jazz collective Malachy Papers. 

Kansas City-based musicians affiliated with Dillon include drummer Go-Go Ray, bassist Johnny Hamil and saxophonist Mark Southerland; he's also worked with national artists including Ani DiFranco, Primus and Jason Isbell.

Dillon is an exceptionally aggressive percussionist. Life is Not a Football, his third album in less than a year, showcases the percussive skills his website describes as "profundity wrapped in absurdity." The fourth track, "Blast Beast Samba," is an abrasive melding of furious heavy metal and lilting Brazilian grooves, as well as his combative playing on vibraphone and marimba — and some absurd grunting. 

Mike Dillon Band, 10 p.m. Friday, July 14 at the Brick, 1727 McGee, Kansas City, Missouri, 64108.

KCUR contributor Bill Brownlee blogs about Kansas City’s jazz scene at Plastic Sax.