Saturday brings an evening of dynamic jazz with an edge of rock as performers Dynamo and Electric Kif bring the funk to Heartwood Soundstage.
Tickets for the show, which will run from 8 to 11 p.m., are available at Eventbrite.com. Tickets purchased in advance are available for $15.68 and for $19.05 on the day of the show.
This performance marks the first stop in Dynamo and Electric Kif’s combined tour, and they are looking to open with a bang. Jason Matthews, the keyboardist for Electric Kif, said that both groups are bringing high energy and long set lists.
“Dynamo is these great dudes from Nashville, like a killer group. It’s going to be sick. It’s really a meaty show,” Matthews said.
Dynamo is a massive, eight-piece band with other musicians rotating in and out. The Nashville group’s size allows them to create incredibly layered instrumental performances overlaid with Dain Ussery’s uplifting vocals.
“It’s awesome, our last record was such a collaboration in so many ways,” Dynamo keyboardist Ryan Connors said. “Everyone is so open to everyone’s ideas, too. I love that. This group is really great about no egos and always catering to the music and the message.”
Though they tour heavily in the Northeast, Dynamo rarely makes it to the South. This tour marks Dynamo’s second time visiting Florida and the band’s first time in Gainesville.
“I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t looking forward to warmer weather,” Connors said.
Dynamo records all of their music live and with an audience. Currently, the group is working on their next album and plans to perform a number of their unreleased tracks at Saturday’s show.
“Dynamo is our creative outlet. In terms of we’re not really shooting for necessarily some commercial success,” Connors said. “So, we can just do whatever we want.”
In addition to performing and recording, the musicians from Dynamo love to give back by putting on workshops at local schools during their tours. As a group that has all studied music extensively, Dynamo is able to provide practical music career advice to students while encouraging an interest in music.
“It’s really rewarding for us, and we’re always trying to do more of that,” Connors said.
Unlike Dynamo, Electric Kif is a primarily instrumental group, leaning into their musical abilities to build a world of music that ebbs between the worlds of jazz, rock, funk and something else. That something else lies in the middle of Rodrigo Zambrano, Eric Escanes, Armando Lopez and Jason Matthews’ various backgrounds.
Hailing from France, Mexico, Miami and Philadelphia, each band member brings a personal touch to the group that, overall, creates Electric Kif. For Matthews, that touch came from listening to his parents’ records from the ‘70s and playing in local jazz clubs.
Last year, Electric Kif released their first full-length album, “Heist,” and began a major tour that carried them to shows and festivals around the country. This tour was critical, Matthews said, because it solidified the band in ways they didn’t know they needed.
“When you go on the road, you form a band intuition, like you start reading each other really well,” Matthews said. “The more experiences that you have, nothing can throw you off.”
Now, Matthews said that the friendship and chemistry among the members of Electric Kif is magnetic for audiences as much as it is fun for them. This bond has also helped them with their writing process.
Electric Kif is preparing to release their second studio album later this year. Unlike “Heist,” this new album will feature a more melodic, groove-based sound and various vocal guests. Despite these changes, Matthews said that the band is devoted to their instrumental edge and rock flare.
The band is taking their time with this record. By really digging into the collaborative writing process, Matthews believes the new record will represent something more whole and cohesive.
“I want it to be a piece of art,” Matthews said.
In addition to the album release later in 2018, Electric Kif is also planning to put out a series of new videos, early released tracks and possibly a live album recorded at the Rochester International Jazz Festival in the coming months. These videos, which are created from the band’s more intimate jam sessions, allow the listener to experience the music in a more organic way.
Through touring and expanding into new projects, Matthews hopes to broaden Electric Kif.
“I’m looking forward to seeing how Electric Kif can fit across all platforms as we dig into the future,” Matthews said. “I don’t want to be based in any genre…. I think we’re more than that. I think we can fit on any scope.”