Exposé Online banner

Dewa Budjana — Joged Kahyangan
(Moonjune MJR059, 2013, CD)

by Peter Thelen, Published 2013-11-03

Joged Kahyangan Cover artBudjana’s second release for Moonjune finds him in a more contemporary jazz setting, not at all unlike his first Dawai in Paradise, except this time much of that album's traditional flavoring has been put on the back burner – in fact I can detect no traditional Indonesian elements until the second-to-last track “Guru Mandala,” and even there it’s very subtle. This time he has surrounded himself with a cast of veteran jazz players: Bob Mintzer on saxes, clarinet, and bass clarinet, drummer Peter Erskine, bassist Jimmy Johnson, and keyboardist Larry Goldings covering Hammond organ and piano all contribute to the prolific and majestic compositions and arrangements that Budjana has scored. All of the players get their chance to shine throughout these eight cuts, but the interplay between guitar, winds and piano on the front line is most engaging. In general, the sound takes on a gentle approach, evoking a mood not unlike much of John Scofield’s or Pat Metheny’s classic work, with the signature title track being one of the album’s many high points with its beautiful melody reprised on bass clarinet. “As You Leave My Nest” is a unique piece among these in that it features a beautiful vocal performance by Janis Siegel (lyrics in English) in a far more laid back setting than most of the other cuts. On first listen, it seemed a bit out of place here, but on subsequent plays its brilliance is revealed; the song is also reprised instrumentally on the album’s closer “Borra’s Ballad.” In summary, this isn’t a showcase for a lot of jaw-dropping guitar techniques, but instead a forum for excellent composition, arrangements, and inspired soloing on a variety of instruments.

Filed under: New releases, 2013 releases

Related artist(s): Dewa Budjana

Latest news

2019-01-11
Jazz Composer Mark Lomax, II Releases Epic 12CD Set – In addition to being a fine jazz drummer, Dr. Mark Lomax, II is a composer in residence at Ohio State University, where he has been very busy on the compositional front. The year 2019 is the 400th anniversary of the arrival of the first ship bringing African slaves to North America, and in commemoration of this, Lomax has produced 400: An Afrikan Epic, a 12 volume set of CDs featuring a variety of different musical ensembles. » Read more

2019-01-02
Chicago-Based Surabhi Ensemble Tours the World in January – Surabhi Ensemble was formed more than a decade ago in Chicago with the aim of bringing together musicians from varying traditions to make music. Saraswathi Ranganathan, who plays veena, assembled a cast that includes Arabic oud, Spanish guitar, and percussion from Africa and India. This month, the group will be sharing their sounds with concert-goers in Southeast Asia, Europe, and Africa. » Read more

2018-12-23
Seaprog Festival Seeks Donations – Seaprog is a small festival in Seattle that highlights creative music from many genres with artists from around the world. It's also a US non-profit organization. They're seeking donations to help keep the ball rolling. Starting in 2013, the organization has been growing, and has featured such artists as Free Salamander Exhibit, Jack o' the Clock, Nik Turner, Cabezas de Cera, Miriodor, Thinking Plague, and many more. » Read more

2018-11-16
The Seventeenth Dream of Dr Sardonicus Festival Tickets Now Available – Fruits de Mer Records and their merry crew of psychedelic explorers are getting set to present the next The Seventeenth Dream of Dr. Sardonicus Festival. The dates are set for August 2-4, 2019 at The Cellar Bar in Cardigan, Wales. They've also announced that the legendary Groundhogs will top the bill. » Read more

2018-11-02
Charles O'Meara (C.W. Vrtacek) RIP – A true musical original has left us. Charles O'Meara, who recorded under the name C.W. Vrtacek, was a wild-card musical talent, ranging from complex progressive rock to introspective modern compositions, with stops at many places inbetween. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Deborah Martin / Erik Wøllo - Between Worlds – The worlds in this case are the spirit world and the physical world, the bridge between them according to Native American beliefs are the ritual, the healing and the magic, and on the music presented...  (2010) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues