The Montauk Project is an improvised percussion/woodwinds duo featuring Milwaukee musicians Jake Polancich (drums/percussion/bassoon) and Ryan Meisel (saxophones, flutes). The project was formed in late 2012 in an effort to explore extreme improvisational opportunities and original music that couldn’t be duplicated in a larger ensemble. Montauk Project continues to serve an artistic longing to react musically to an array of occurrences in our world...good, evil, and everything in between. With this project, the music goes where it needs to. While the core of their sound rests on drums and saxophones, the duet features a number of additional woodwind and percussion instruments, electronic processors, loops, and other effects. There is an intentional transparency to Montauk Project compositions; allowing the music to breathe, morph, flex, and maneuver.
Jake and Ryan share a musical bond formed after many years playing together in the Meisel Music Collective. Coming together earlier this decade, they have found a musical language within their work. Both being music educators, they are able to relate their music to real life concepts making their music accessible to all ages, and variations of listeners.