“What does it sound like when someone’s talking with a clarinet jammed in his skull?” asks Alloy Orchestra’s Ken Winokur. The Cambridge, Massachusetts-based trio brings antic humor, off-beat perspective, and consummate professionalism to the task of scoring silent films. With their latest endeavor, “Wild and Weird: The Alloy Orchestra Plays 10 Fascinating and Innovative Films 1906-1926” in Ebertfest (Roger Ebert’s 14th annual showcase in Champaign, Illinois) this month, I caught up with Winokur for a video essay tribute to the wild, weird, and fascinating process that has Alloy (Winokur, along with Roger Miller and Terry Donahue) opening up silent films to broader audiences.

Originally published on Fandor.

Kevin B. Lee is Editor in Chief of IndieWire’s PressPlay Video Blog and contributor to Roger Ebert.com. Follow him on Twitter.