The Matt Koon Foundation
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The Matt Koon Foundation

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"The Matt Koon Foundation Don't Need No Stinkin' Singer"

Instrumental Rock May not be the hottest trend these days, but The Matt Koon Foundation is here to say it is alive and well.
Fans of guitar legends Steve vai and Jimi Hendrix will find something to enjoy here, but the bottom line is a little more funky and a little southern, like ZZ Top at times, or occasionally throwing in a little latin flavor a la Santana. Koon's guitar is proficient without getting too technical; he's good and he knows it, but he doesn't indulge in over-complicated noodling just for noodling's sake. He's having fun and rocking out , not just showing off.
The band is surprisingly tight for having been together just over a year, Koon has put together a strong line-up, and it's no wonder, after a rumored four-month audition process. It's clear that the members are all experienced and talented musicians in their own for all that Koon takes center stage.
The band is likely to appeal to people more used to vocal rock, because unlike many instrumental bands, they actually write distinct songs, rather than jamming for ten minutes and then calling it a track. Each song is strongly written, not over-ling, and has an individual personality.
To paraphrase a quote from their web site sums them up succinctly, "Not a self-indulgant jam band or over-your-head prog, the songs are the star" With every video-gamer fancying himself a guitar hero these days, perhaps rock music with pyrotechnic guitar parts in place of vocals will experience a resurgance? If/when it does, Matt Koon is ready to take the lead. - The Brick January 10 2008

"Matt Koon Foundation's songs are speechless"

Think of the last time when hearing just a few seconds of a song led your fingers to assume the air-guitar position. Maybe the urge demanded hardware and manifested itself through some fake fingering with the "Guitar Hero" game.

These are the little thrills that ultimately prompt the question: Who needs a singer?

Enter The Matt Koon Foundation.

"I've always enjoyed instrumental guitar music, and I've always thought there were some people that did it really, really well, and I've always wanted to give it a try," said guitarist Matt Koon, speaking from his Mechanicsville home.

"At the same time, I thought it would be an interesting thing to do, too, [and] kind of unique for the Richmond area to have an instrumental guitar act. I thought that could be the same thing as a vocal band, but instead of having the vocal playing the main melody it would be a guitar playing the main melody."

After performing in Richmond-area bands for seven-plus years, Koon was ready for something new.

Taking cues from the work of Joe Satriani and the hard grooves of Led Zeppelin and Guns N' Roses, Koon set to work writing and recording a group of songs (now posted on the band's MySpace page) and then went in search of musicians to play them.

Four months of auditions later, The Matt Koon Foundation debuted at the Hamaganza benefit show at Alley Katz last December, which propelled the band to more local appearances.

Lead guitarist-songwriter Koon, guitarist Rob Birzer, drummer Adam Young, bassist John Davis and percussionist Cory Muldoon recently settled into Angelis Studios in Chesterfield to record the group's first album.

The band members' approach became further defined as they gelled as a unit over the last few months. "I would say we are song-oriented, guitar-driven, instrumental hard rock," said Koon.

"By song-oriented, I think it's real easy for bands, especially if they're instrumental, to be jamming at a wrong time, like a jam band, or be a little over your head, like progressive, but I wanted them to be real songs."

After performing on a bill with Jimmie's Chicken Shack recently, Koon was told by an audience member that his group was the best opening band they had ever seen.

The guitarist, stirred by the praise, referred to the band's basic mission statement: "The goal of this band is, very simply, to make the best music we can with the tools that we have, and that's it."

- Richmond Times Dispatch Dec 13th, 2007

"Pick of the Week!"

This local all instrumental rock/jam band was formed in late 2006 and quickly gained a following of dedicated fans. And for a good reason. Their guitar laden anthems roll with an amazing rhythm and are quick to get heads nodding and toes tapping. The Foundation can be likened to a vocal-less cross between Santana, the Allman Brothers and Widespread Panic (but without the annoying holier-than-thou fan base.) As they say, it's true music. - Jan 7th, 2008


CD RELEASE March 2008
The Matt Koon Foundation
Rebel Without Applause



The Matt Koon Foundation is completing work on it's much anticipated debut album of hook-driven, eclectic, song-oriented rock with a technical flair. The band also is Instrumental. You don't miss the singer, because the guitars in this band carry melodies and takes them to the next level without missing a beat.
Guitarist and songwriter Matt Koon has assembled Central Virginia's best rock musicians to complete a musicial vision that is unique and memorable.

This band has only been playing regularly for a year, becoming a fixture at the top of the Richmond Music Journal's "hot list", and recieving numerous positive media reviews, and playing to clubs full of dedicated fans.

While Instrumental, this band is more influenced by the song-stylings of artists such as Led Zeppelin, Guns n' Roses, Lenny Kravitz and the Beatles. The guitar -slinger comparisons will be made though and there is a definite Joe Satriani and Carlos Santana influence. The stage show is High energy, and the technical execution takes the best of Jam bands and jazz fusion artists and leaves the self-indulgant and heady overtones.