Savage Wizdom's Pablo Talks of A New Beginning

Mixing things up blending American and European metal to create their own take on the power metal genre, Savage Wizdom have been going at it for a while now, releasing their latest efforts "A New Beginning", playing shows to follow through, with plans for new music, more shows, and whatever more comes up! Guitarist Pablo Roybal discusses this release, shows, back story, and more!

1. Please tell us about the history of your band and its members.

Pablo:  The band was formed in 2004 by Steve Montoya [vocalist].  He had just come off of a decade of driving trucks across the country and decided that he wanted to give music another shot.  Steve fronted a band called Prowler back in the 1980’s and early ‘90 and they were a pretty well known band on the local scene.  After the band broke up, Steve took some time to raise his two sons and opted for a more practical, steady job for income.  I don’t think he ever got music out of his system though so Savage Wizdom was born and in 2007 a debut album [No Time For Mercy] was released.  The band fell apart weeks after the release but Steve decided to re-boot the band in February 2008.  His son, Steven Montoya, was initially brought in on bass and moved to guitar a few years later.  I was brought in by the band’s original drummer whom I had met playing on the local scene in Albuquerque.  Steve Cordova is a former Prowler band mate of Steve’s and he was brought in when Santiago [the original drummer] could no longer dedicate the time to the band.  James, our bassist, is our newest member but a longtime fan of the band who has been coming to our shows for years.  When Sean Coblentz left, James came in for an audition and it just seemed like a good fit.  He already knew all of the songs so it was just a matter of showing him how to play them.

2. Why did you pick the name that you did for your band?

Pablo:  As I understand, the name comes from the Savage Sword Of Conan comics.  Steve is a big fan of the series and he had already had an idea for a band name called Wizdom.  He just combined the two ideas and came up with Savage Wizdom.

3. Where is the band based out of and what is your music scene like there? Are there any local bands you could recommend?

Pablo: We are based out of Santa Fe, New Mexico.  The music scene in this area is quite varied with different genres of music from punk, mariachi, country, blues, rock and plenty of metal.  There are quite a few death metal bands on the scene over here but I believe that we are currently the only one resembling the power metal genre.  For the thrash metal fans, check out Regicide and look for their debut CD, Fall Of An Empire, due early next year.  Also check out 3 Weeks Later.  If progressive death metal is more your thing, look no further than Carrion Kind.  Their guitar player is a very good friend of ours and also engineered the recording of our latest CD.

4. How would you describe your style? Which bands influenced your music?

Pablo: I’d say we are somewhere between classic heavy metal and power metal.  Collectively, we all have different influences that have shaped who we are as players and writers, but I’d say the biggest influences have been Iron Maiden, Helloween, Dio, Judas Priest, Primal Fear, Avantasia, and Stratovarius.

5. What have you released so far and how were your releases received by the public/media?

Pablo: The band's debut release, No Time For Mercy, was released in 2007 and was received rather well.  The band fell apart just weeks after it's release and as a result the album never really got the proper promotion that it deserved.  We still play a lot of those songs though and we are even discussing the idea of doing a re-release of the disc.  Our latest CD, A New Beginning, was released in August and the response has been very positive.  Even better than we had anticipated.  It has sold a respectable amount of units in Greece and Germany and we have had orders come in from all over the globe.  Brave Words ( gave it a very nice review which we are stoked about and the whole experience has really been quite exciting for us.

6. Do you play live as well? What do you have planned in terms of shows and touring, if any?

Pablo: Playing live is what we enjoy most as a band.  We have played a lot of shows around the state and are hoping to get out of state to do some shows in 2015.  No real touring plans at the moment though.  We would certainly consider it but we would all have to work around our respective day jobs.

7. What should labels/zines/promoters know about your band? Why should they be interested in it?

Pablo: I think what is really interesting about this band is the fact that five people from different age groups and different backgrounds have all managed to come together to make this project happen.  In a lot of ways, we really are five very different people who have been united in our love of metal and a desire to play music.  I joke sometimes that it is unfortunate that the name Motley Crue is already taken because we are a pretty motley group of guys.

8. What plans do you have for the near future as a band?

Pablo: Mostly just promote the new CD as much as we can.  We have a couple of new songs in the works though so we will be testing those out in the near future.  We are currently rehearsing a new one penned by Steve and Steven that is somewhere between Helloween and Avantasia.

9. Where can we listen to your band and where can we buy your stuff?

Pablo: Go to our Bandcamp page ( to listen to streams as well as buy music.  We have made both of our albums available for streaming and are currently offering digital downloads of our debut release for $5.  Physical copies of A New Beginning are available at Amazon and CD Baby and digital downloads are available on iTunes.

10. What is it you’d like a listener to remember the most when hearing your music for the first time?

Pablo: I just hope that it is enjoyable to them.  Usually what catches my ear first when I hear new music for the first time is a good hook or a good melody that resonates with me.  I would like to think that our new CD has a little bit of that being that it is derived from bands like Maiden and Helloween who are masters of that.  Maybe there is someone out there who is a little down on his luck or is going through a bit of a rough time is his or her life and they can listen to a song like “A New Beginning,” “Let It Go” or “Point Of No Return” and it will resonate with them in a way that will inspire and uplift them.  Music has always had a way of helping me get through some dark times and if our music does that for anyone, even if it’s just one person, I think that is one of the greatest things that a band can aspire to.

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