Wandering Monster on ubuntu music
Wandering Monster release their eponymous debut album on Ubuntu Music in 2019. Well established on the northern music scene, the band features Sam Quintana on double bass, Ben Powling on tenor saxophone, Calvin Travers on guitar, Tom Higham on drums and Aleks Podraza on piano and keyboards.
The music juxtaposes the harmonic sophistication and improvisational approach of jazz with the rhythmic complexity of modern rock and metal resulting in a sound that is intense, yet dynamic, sensitive and spontaneous. “My early musical experiences saw me playing bass guitar in rock and metal bands. In my late teens I developed a love for jazz, which intensified when I moved to Leeds and started studying the double bass,” explains Quintana. “The musicians that inspired me to start writing for a group were those who blend the jazz and rock genres, the likes of Dave Holland, Kurt Rosenwinkel and Tigran Hamasyan being at the top of my list of influences.”
Quintana’s compositions reflect the ‘inner monsters’ we can all possess at some point in our lives. “’The Rush Begins’ and ‘Tuco’ let the band show off their raucous side and explore themes of anxiety, anger and frustration, whereas in contrast ‘Sweetheart’, ‘Emöke’ and ‘Happy Place’ are gentler and more reflective, delving into themes of grief, loss and nostalgia,” says Quintana. ‘Samsara’, the opening track, takes us on a journey of re-invention that sees its initial motif reappear under a different guise after a passage of intense collective improvisation.