Gig Seeker Pro


Kansas City, Missouri, United States | SELF

Kansas City, Missouri, United States | SELF
Band EDM Jam


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"Music Review: Mouth - Word of Mouth Vol. 1"

The band Mouth has been playing in the Kansas City area for just under a year, combining a highly improvisational jazz style to a tongue-and-cheek trip-hop sound. Keeping their sense of humor a step ahead of their art, the band self-released Word of Mouth Vol. 1: Greatest Hits From Our Cosmic Infancy, a collection of live recordings, mostly improvised, from a handful of local venues.

This is a gorgeously recorded collection of songs. The notion of live recordings from local venues can conjure thoughts of tapers playing hackey sack before the show, and the abrasive intrusions of people yelling “Fluffhead!” during the quiet moments. That is not the case here. Word of Mouth is a deliberately balanced and mastered recording, allowing the listener to fully appreciate and hear the spontaneous nature of the guitar, bass, and drum trio.

The entirely instrumental record weaves its way into different musical landscapes like jazz, funk, and fusion, but it manages to separate itself from “just another jam-band” territory due to the disciplined sense of where each is song is headed. There is a lot of lateral thinking happening, keeping the turns always appealing and never repetitive.

“File’s Done,” recorded at Raoul’s, begins with a heavy, groovy bass-line over a subtle loop and scratch. Jeremy Anderson, the bands guitarist, takes his time on the song, always the light and airy yin to the yang of Zach Rizer’s bass. The two never overshadow each other, and they allow plenty of room for Stephen Gunn’s drums to create some interesting play with the rhythms before it fades away.

“McCollum” has a definite dance-floor feel to it, if the dance-floor were on the moon's surface. The house beats and echoed notes provide a framework for all three of Mouth’s voices to carve out their own expressions, never forgetting the space in which they are confined.

It is a refreshing realization for a band that relies so heavily on improvisation to embrace that which affords them success. By releasing live versions of their work instead of a collection of song structures recorded in a studio, they can satisfy their fan base and their own artistic expectations. They also prove something by taking as much care recording of their music as they did performing it. - Present Magazine

"Local album review: Mouth"

Kansas City band Mouth combines the elements of guitar, bass and drums to form a delectable musical stew in Word of Mouth, Volume 1. The band adds the fresh spices of jazz, funk, dance and hip hop to create an eclectic mix.

Much of the band’s freshness comes with its ability to improvise, a cornerstone of any successful jazz musician or group. Of the album’s 11 tracks, seven were improvised. While artists of other genres are limited to confined structures and forms, exceptional jazz musicians allow themselves to be malleable. They’re free from time signatures and chord structures but can flip back to a rigid chorus as a counterbalance.

Mouth does this from start to finish. It puts stellar musicianship at the forefront of its debut, capturing live recordings from local shows that represent its first four months as a band.

Each member gets his time to shine in every song. Bassist Zach Rizer takes on the tough task of providing both rhythm and melody in the lead-off track, “I’m a Doctor.” Impressively high, piercing bass lines and even chords overtake the quieter but complementary guitar and drums.

Jeremy Anderson’s murky guitar sets a trippy, dancey tone in “Beepilepsy.” The song’s focus is less jazzy and more of a sedate dance-hall groove, thanks to a repeating guitar-riff cycle and pulsating background rhythms.

Drummer Stephen Gunn shows his skills in “Jackpot Jam,” starting strong with marching snare rolls and shifting to a mix of straightforward, syncopated beats. The drum-driven tune unfolds into an elaborate yet improvised attack, coming from all sides of the talented trio. The ingredients of counterpoint melodies and offset rhythms bounce off each other, coming together in a funky frenzy.

Word of Mouth, Volume 1 represents a group of skilled musicians with the ability to develop a tight, collective unit and create an unrestricted place to showcase their strong individual talents. - Ink


"Word of Mouth, Volume 1." Released in October of 2009.

"Word of Mouth, Volume 2." Release in July of 2010.

The nature of improvisation means that no two performances are ever the same, so Mouth tries to record as many of their live performances as possible. Many of these recordings have been made available for free download at the band's official website,



Formed in Kansas City in late 2008 by guitarist Jeremy Anderson, bassist Zach Rizer and drummer Stephen Gunn, Mouth plays original "cyberfunk" music: bass-heavy, futuristic funk grooves that combine the rhythms of funk, house, electronica and dubstep with the unpredictable improvisational approach of a jam band and the face-melting instrumental technique of progressive rock and jazz fusion.

Having quickly established a name for themselves in their hometown with their exhilarating live shows, Mouth is now branching out with tour dates and festival performances throughout the Midwest, including appearances with Umphrey's McGee, EOTO, Big Gigantic, Papadosio and Zoogma.