Too Many Zooz quite literally blew fans away with their energy and sound from just three instruments on stage.
The group — comprised of Leo Pellegrino on the baritone saxophone, Matt Muirhead on trumpet and keys, and David Parks on drums — combines jazz, house and electronic influences to form their unique sound. Each member brought their eclectic fashion and dancing shoes to Madison.
Millennials were mingling as the Majestic quickly started to fill up. Their set started off on a high note when Pellegrino came waltzing out with a gold chain around his neck, sporting sparkly skinny jeans and a Pikachu tank-top. Pellegrino used his star power and killer dance moves to lure the attention of the audience. He also stirred up excitement among the crowd with some wild saxophone lines.
Next came Parks, casually beating the bass drum tied around his waist marked with the emblem “2MZ.” This contraption was fully equipped with a cowbell and many other small percussion and rhythm instruments. He kept the beat steady just in time for Muirhead to come out blasting his trumpet and showing off his incredible range.
At least 15 minutes of music passed before anyone on stage said a word. The trio kept the talking to a minimum and the playing to a maximum. Even though there are only three of them, there was a lot happening on the stage.
Each member fed off the energy from the crowd. Lots of dancing and various cheers emerged throughout the night. One member would start playing a mesmerizing beat, and the others — including the crowd — would quickly pick up on it. Fans were truly astonished by their ability to mix improvisation with some already established tracks.
The only time the music stopped for more than 30 seconds occurred right before the encore. Parks came out with just a microphone and had an honest conversation with the audience. He humbly explained the story of Too Many Zooz and encouraged everyone in the room to follow their dreams, no matter how big they may seem. It was a great way to end a wonderful night with a group that knew how to work hard but also bring fun into it.
Music fans definitely appreciate what they’re doing — it’s different, it’s funky and it’s fresh. The group proved they don’t need vocals to get a crowd to shout and feel the groove. Being able to play an instrument live for an extended amount of time without any flaws is quite a remarkable talent. An energetic Madison crowd and some brilliant musicians made for a perfect pair on a snowy Tuesday night. I hope to see this talented trio back on the Isthmus soon.