MANTIS is a celebration of the music and memory of Drew Menzies. Although by no means definitive, these recordings are an example of how open Drew’s compositions are, and a representation of the collective response to his music from the assembled musicians and arrangers, including John Psathas, Matt Penman, the NZ String Quartet, Roger Manins and James Illingworth. Reuben Bradley’s (producer of the album) vision for this project was so infectious that each collaborator was willing to take time out of their busy (in some cases crushing) schedules to freely support his aspirations. The results speak for themselves – warm, lucid, generous performances, captured and presented with great affection and skill. But the primary motivation for their unconditional support for the project was the memory and music of a much loved and dearly missed friend.
Drew Menzies left behind a legacy that can’t be denied, a list of achievements that would make any musician envious. He had an extremely full and diverse career. In his 31 years he had performed and studied both extensively and internationally. As a Classical musician Drew performed widely with The New Zealand Symphony Orchestra, Auckland Philharmonia, New Zealand Opera, Altoona Symphony (US), Pennsylvania Chamber Orchestra (US) and Key West Symphony (US).
As a Jazz musician, Drew performed and recorded with McCoy Tyner (US), John Riley (US), David Paquette (US), Colin Hemmingsen (NZ), Reuben Bradley (NZ) & Charmaine Ford (NZ). His abilities as a sympathetic bass player enabled him to branch out to more commercial realms, recording with Apollo 10 (NZ) and Philadelphia Hip Hop artists Black Science Orchestra (US).
Meeting at Union Square (6:54)
I've Got Nothing Good to Say (8:02)
Laura's Laksa (7:01)
Ladies Man (7:54)
9 Out of 10 Out of Its (4:31)
Mansfield (Street) (7:41)
Mantis & Muscles (5:07)
Man's Life (7:56)
Oh Lord! (9:53)