Jazz sensibility with future dancefloor orientated grooves, deep funk, tough drums and tropical rhythms.
Will Holland, aka Quantic, is one of the most talented and prolific artists in the world of alternative dance music today. Recording under various guises, (Will’s musical projects also include The Limp Twins, a duo he formed with sometime DJ partner Russell Porter on vocals, and his unmistakably savvy production completing the magic), it is under the Quantic moniker that he has blazed a trail where others have followed, enjoying consistent acclaim and success, with solo work leading to live bands the Quantic Soul Orchestra and more recently Quantic and his Combo Bárbaro, plus the intriguing Flowering Inferno side project.
Holland released his first Quantic album, ‘The 5th Exotic’ in the summer of 2001 on Tru Thoughts, when he was just 20. It was picked up on by some of the most respected names in underground music. Richard Dorfmiester, Mr Scruff and LTJ Bukem all raved about it, not surprising when tunes like “Common Knowledge” and the near classic “Life in the Rain” had blazed across dance floors all over Europe. With elements of jazz, funk and Afro blended with tight breaks and distinctive production, ‘The 5th Exotic’ proved irresistible and won many plaudits.
Building on this acclaim, the release of ‘Apricot Morning’ less than a year later dispelled any talk of “the difficult second album”; his sound seemed to expand in every direction and he became the first Tru Thoughts artist to collaborate with Alice Russell as well as recording with MC EQ and Bristol’s freshest hip hop crew, Aspects. ‘Apricot Morning’ is a perfect snapshot of everything happening at the jazzier end of underground music in 2002, as proved by Gilles Peterson who ranked it amongst his albums of the year.
The release of the album ‘Mishaps Happening’ in 2004 saw Quantic continuing to work with Alice Russell as well as recording two tracks with the legendary Spanky Wilson (with whom he went on to collaborate on a tour and an electrifying album for his Quantic Soul Orchestra…but that’s another story). Quantic released a two-disc ‘One Offs, Remixes and B Sides’ album in 2005, which featured Mr Scruff and remixes by Pilooski and Seiji; and his fifth long player, ‘An Announcement To Answer’ followed in 2006, cementing his reputation as a 21st Century Quincy Jones.
Quantic regularly DJs across the world (and we mean the World not just America, Europe and Japan) spreading the unique Quantic sound with each set. His music has been featured on countless compilations and TV soundtracks, and he has a busy schedule of remixes and collaborations across the board; his track with Nickodemus, “Mi Swing Es Tropical”, soundtracked Apple’s worldwide summer iPod advert.
In 2007 Will Holland relocated to Cali, Colombia, where he has had a studio built and is continuing to create exciting music at a characteristically prolific rate, taking inspiration from the heady mix of rhythms and sounds on his doorstep. This inspiration saw a new project come to life in 2008, under the moniker Quantic Presenta Flowering Inferno, a summery dub and reggae-inspired affair with an authentic tropical vibe. The album, ‘Death Of The Revolution’ came out in July 2008 featuring Holland on various instruments with contributions from a host of Latin American musicians, including the legendary Peruvian pianist Alfredo Linares. This album pricked up the ears of many tastemakers and fans alike, including Gilles Peterson and Mark Lamarr (BBC Radio 2), who were excited and curious about the new musical progression - and impressed that it sounded as stunning and original as any Quantic album to date.
Over the years, Quantic’s amazing catalogue of releases has been peppered with highly acclaimed albums by full live band The Quantic Soul Orchestra, and the big story for 2009 was the formation of Quantic and his Combo Bárbaro, a handpicked band of internationally renowned musicians (several of whom featured on the Flowering Inferno project) to take over from The Quantic Soul Orchestra in realising the next stage of Holland’s musical vision. The highly acclaimed album, ‘Tradition In Transition’ reached No. 4 in the official European World Music Chart and garnered rave reviews and features in publications across the board, from world music titles to hipster lifestyle magazines. It was accompanied by a beautiful and intriguing film by renowned photographer/director B+, capturing the rhythms of life in Cali. A tour of the UK and Europe included a headline set at the Big Chill, a sold-out show at London’s Roundhouse, and proved to be an electrifying live experience.
The Combo Bárbaro toured the UK and Europe again in June/July 2010, with major festival sets including Glastonbury, which was broadcast on BBC TV. The new Flowering Inferno album ‘Dog With A Rope’ came out to much acclaim in July.
Early 2011 saw the release of the “Caliventura EP”, featuring remixes of Quantic and his Combo Bárbaro by Daedelus, J-Boogie, Cut Chemist and more; further DJ dates and a full live tour of the UK and Europe are confirmed for the Summer, and a ‘Best Of’ collection will be released in September, to celebrate ten remarkable years of Quantic making music on Tru Thoughts.