Crisis & Opportunity, Vol. 2 - Peaks Myele Manzanza
- 1Peaks & Ferns03:39
- 2Sit in Your Discomfort02:32
- 3The People's Changes03:42
- 4The People's Shadow03:29
- 5To the Before Time01:27
- 6When We Could Dance Together03:51
- 7African Folk Song03:03
- 8Back in the Days03:56
- 9A Night in Berlin02:18
- 10Two Chords & the Truth03:01
- 11Quinnies for the Boys02:09
- 12Ancestral Mathematics03:09
- 13Crisis & Opportunity05:05
Info for Crisis & Opportunity, Vol. 2 - Peaks
Hot on the heels of the first instalment of his much-lauded ‘Crisis & Opportunity’ record series, world-renowned drummer/composer, & producer/beatmaker, Myele Manzanza, now readies Volume 2 for release, giving an insight into his new material with brand new single ‘Quinnies For The Boys’.
A founding member of Electric Wire Hustle, Myele has released four solo albums and racked up tours and collaborations with Jordan Rakei, Theo Parrish, Miguel Atwood-Ferguson, Recloose and Amp Fiddler amongst others. Myele has developed a strong live presence in his new London base; his quartet has shared stages with the likes of Hiatus Kaiyote, The Bad Plus, Alfa Mist, and drawing packed houses to top venues such as The Jazz Café and Ronnie Scott’s.
Hailing originally from New Zealand, Myele made the move to London in 2019. Having tapped into the vibrant scene of his adopted home with a top tier cast of young London based talent (including Ashley Henry and additional contributions from the legendary Mark de Clive-Lowe) the resulting record 'Crisis & Opportunity Vol.1 - London’ gained praise from the likes of Mary Anne Hobbs, Jamie Cullum, Huey Morgan, The Guardian, Complex, Jazz FM + more.
‘Crisis & Opportunity Vol. 2 - Peaks’ now sees Myele join forces with Andre Marmot, Jay Phelps & Lewis Moody, as well fellow Kiwi musicians Aron Ottignon, Matt Dal Din, Ashton Sellars (who similarly have now found themselves living in the UK / EU) taking inspiration from the mixtape format (favoured by many cult status producers and MC’s) and delivering thirteen doses of exhilarating, Jazz infused bottled lightning. Frustrated by the confines of a planned approach to writing music, Myele was set on embodying a spirit of collaboration and improvisation in the project. He explains “Often the most creative moments came when we had worked our way through the tight trees & moguls of the composition, and settled into the wide-open powder trails of the vamp at the end of the piece. This process was also something that I used to do all the time back in my home city of Wellington, New Zealand in clubs like Havana, The Matterhorn or The Rogue and Vagabond in a style affectionately known as the ‘Welli Jam’. Just get a groove going with a few basic chords and let the music go wherever it goes. As I had been bashing my head into a brick wall trying to ‘compose’ music, I realized that I could just say, “fuck it. I trust these musicians. If I give them the space, then they’ll be able to fill it with good ideas”
With this new pathway opening up infinite possibilities to the outfit, the record quickly began to take shape. Myele says “Funnily enough, over half of the finished album was recorded from excerpts of a single jam session that was a little over an hour long. This was largely due to time pressure and deadline before the studio had to wrap up, and no doubt we were exhausted after the amount of focus and energy taken to get through my pre-composed material, but it’s funny how we can draw out some peak performances when under pressure.”
First single ‘Quinnies For The Boys’ kicks this off with a scattered drum pattern accented cascading piano arpeggios setting the energy for what lies ahead. These give way to an irresistibly off-kilter phrasing which quickly takes hold of the listener. Giving us a clue of what to expect from the full-length record, ‘Crisis & Opportunity’ Vol.2 continues to follow Myele Manzanza’s artistic journey throughout the global pandemic whilst continuing to re-examine and re-approach his approach to crafting music.
Myele Manzanza, drums, percussion, programming
Ashton Sellars, guitar
Aron Ottignon, piano, synthesizer, vocoder
Matt Dal Din, bass
Jay Phelps, trumpet
Lewis Moody, additional synthesizer
Andre Marmot, additional percussion
At just 25 years old the musically prolific Myele Manzanza has not only held down the drums as part of New Zealand’s Electric Wire Hustle for the past 5 years but has also drummed for many other NZ bands including Olmecha Supreme, Sheba Williams, The Recloose Live Band, The Jonathan Crayford Trio as well as for his father – Sam Manzanza’s Rhythm Africa Band & countless other musical projects. Myele only started playing drum kit at age 14 but has been hand drumming traditional African rhythms with his father Sam Manzanza from a young age. “Growing up music and rhythm was all around me and I understood it from a very early age. Through my father I learnt the language of the drum probably at the same time as I learnt to talk! My dad was one of the first Africans to perform traditional African & High Life music live in New Zealand & he has been a tremendous influence & inspiration on my career as a musician.”says Myele. Since graduating from the New Zealand School Of Music with a Degree in Jazz performance in 2008, Myele has dutifully dedicated himself to learning the new discipline of digital music production. In 2010 Myele was the only New Zealander selected to participate in the Red Bull Music Academy in London where he picked up a wealth of knowledge & skill from the many other participants from all over the world and expert lecturers such as Flying Lotus, Roots Manuva, Cluster, Moodyman, Dr Peter Zinovieff and DJ Zinc. The rest of the year was spent living between Berlin & New York & touring with Electric Wire Hustle with laptop in hand. The fertile breeding ground of creativity of these cities provided the seeds of musical inspiration to put together his first album aptly titled ‘One’.
This album contains no booklet.