Photos / Words by Matthew Hebert

and Matt Butler arrived at The Blockley on the eve of the hippy pseudo-holiday a star studded cast in tow. got the intimate 700 capacity crowd moving his unique brand melodic piano rock. In addition to being an adept songwriter and pianist, Marco is an on-stage power house. I’m always surprised and impressed how a guy who looks like he just rolled out of bed moments prior to taking the stage and plays a set sitting behind an upright piano can command and audience the way he does. But Marco always has the audience captivated and Friday’s set was no different, the crowd was all in from the start; dancing to infectiously danceable tracks like ‘Limbs of a Pine’ and singing along to crowd . Of course, the Tiger Face made an appearance and was donned by both of Marco’s bandmates and Andy Borger to the delight of the crowd. With the in attendance, it was only a matter of time before we saw some collaboration which came in the form of () and () taking the stage with Marco.

And that was just the start of the evening. After some stage reconfiguration, Matt Butler and his packed the stage, and what a powerhouse incarnation it was: featuring , () on guitar, () on drums, () on vocals/sax, Alex Toth () on trumpet, () on bass and Trevor Garrod () on keys and of course made an appearance mid-way through the set. For those uninitiated, the is an improvisational project consisting of various cast members and led by Matt Butler who conducts the flow and mood of the musicians and crowd through whiteboard notes, hand gestures, and I have to assume telepathy. Just like any great conductor / master of ceremonies, Matt Butler skillfully maneuvered his musical creations throughout the evening. Writing notes like ‘Rock in E’ or ‘Follow Al!’ was all the direction needed to drop into some impressive improvisational grooves. The audience always gets involved as well, taking cues from Matt to yell ‘!’ or sing along. The party went essentially all night with the closing notes ending around 3:30. With the breadth of talent on stage throughout the night and the fact that the show was nearly 6 hours of , I’d have to assume that those lucky enough to be in attendance were quite pleased with what they had just witnessed. I know I was! Check out some photos from the evening:

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