Hailed as "a blazing hot mess of awesome" by The New York City Jazz Record, the Michael Leonhart Orchestra (MLO) traverses a huge swath of musical terrain, guided by the highly developed ears, ceaselessly omnivorous tastes and playful yet meticulous artistry of it's leader, Michael Leonhart.
Following their 2018 debut album The Painted Lady Suite, MLO will release their second full length, Suite Extracts Vol. I on August 30, via Sunnyside Records. // The surprising collection documents an aspect of the MLO 's mission: playing covers, but in the Leonhart way - with widely disparate material ranging from Fela Kuti to Spinal Tap to Howlin' Wolf to Ornette Coleman curated into song sequences, forming anarchic yet internally coherent thoughts on some of Leonhart's chief musical passions.
The album features notable guests Chris Potter, Nels Cline, Donny McCaslin, John Ellis, Erik Friedlander and many others in the context of a vibrant and unclassifiable 20-piece ensemble. // The MLO has developed and refined the suites through the course of it's monthly residencies at Jazz Standard, one of New York's most prestigious jazz rooms. Leonhart continues to pursue his vision there, with unconventional instrumentation and a shapeshifting community of sought-after players from a variety of cutting-edge scenes and disciplines.
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