The lineup for the Burlington show featured guitarist Rob Compa, a local fixture and a regular collaborator for the band, and his Dopapod bandmate Neal “Fro” Evans (drums) in his first Club d’Elf performance. Ahead of the show, the band also hinted a “surprise guest from the Vermont music community coming down to sit in.”
That surprise guest was none other than Gordon, bassist for Burlington’s most famous musical export. The Phish bassist, who was celebrating his 58th birthday on Saturday evening, joined in with the intrepid outfit late in the show for a stretch of ambient improv. Prior to Gordon’s sit-in, singer-songwriter Ryan Montbleau also joined on vocals for a tune at the end of the band’s first of two sets.
Below, check out a brief clip of Mike Gordon sitting in with Club d’Elf at Burlington’s Foam Brewers via Dopapod’s Instagram. You can also stream a full audio recording of the show via archive.org user shemp72 (track six features Montbleau, while tracks seven and eight feature Gordon). For a complete list of upcoming Club d’Elf shows, head here.
Club d’Elf has been helping audiences lose track of time for almost 25 years with its mesmerizing synthesis of Moroccan traditional music and electronic, dubbed-out funk. Built around bassist and composer Mike Rivard and drummer Dean Johnston, each Club d’Elf performance features a different line-up, drawn from a constellation of some of the most creative improvisers from the jazz, DJ, rock, jam, world music scenes of Boston, New York, and beyond. The band’s music draws from a wide spectrum of styles including jazz, hip hop, electronica, avant garde, prog-rock and dub. Under the tutelage of member Brahim Fribgane, who hails from Casablanca, the band has absorbed Moroccan trance music, which is now an essential part of the mix. Diverse audiences are drawn to Fribgane’s mesmerizing oud stylings, and Rivard’s commanding playing of the Moroccan sintir. Trance forms the central core of the Club d’Elf aesthetic, weaving together the band’s various influences.
Club D’Elf ft. Members of Dopapod, Phish, More – Full Audio – 6/3/23