Exposé Online banner

Dewa Budjana — Surya Namaskar
(Moonjune MJR063, 2014, CD)

by Peter Thelen, Published 2014-04-05

Surya Namaskar Cover art

Indonesian guitarist Dewa Budjana has adopted a much more loose and improvisational style on his seventh solo endeavor (and his third for Moonjune), much of which was recorded in Los Angeles in January and October 2013. The eight cuts on Surya Namaskar are full of surprises with each new spin, and after at least a couple dozen plays I’m still in awe of what’s gone down in these sessions. Having master fretless bassist Jimmy Johnson (who hasn’t he played with?) and former Zappa drummer Vinnie Colaiuta on board as his primary sidemen certainly doesn’t hurt, as Budjana easily rises to match their level of mastery. Even Allan Holdsworth’s keybord player Gary Husband is guesting on the opening track “Fifty,” and Michael Landau shares the guitar spotlight on the album’s title track. Three additional players are featured on Sundanese (Western Java) harp and violin, and vocals, on the Indonesian flavored “Kalingga,” where Budjana plays a heavily fuzzed and sitar effected guitar before launching out into a more conventional jazz idiom, then alternating back, bridging his ethnic traditions to western styles on the album’s most unique cut. The closer, “Dalem Waturenggong,” in another similar bridge of traditional and jazz, but only involves the core trio. Every track here is fully composed and arranged by Budjana, and more than anything this time he is offering a more spontaneous and uninhibited approach to playing, which is a marked difference from the two previous Moonjune releases Dewai in Paradise and Joged Kahyangan which tended to be a bit more restrained, though technically and artistically excellent. For anyone not yet familiar with Budjana, Surya Namaskar is the place to start.


Filed under: New releases, 2014 releases

Related artist(s): Dewa Budjana, Gary Husband

More info
http://dewabudjana-moonjunerecords.bandcamp.com/album/surya-namaskar-hd

Latest news

2020-10-14
Audion Is Back in Business – Our esteemed colleague Alan Freeman has restarted Audion Magazine after a seven year hiatus. The new incarnation is available online on their Bandcamp site. Audion's history goes back to 1984, and included 58 issues up to 2013. Issue #59 is available now, and #60 is in the works. » Read more

2020-10-06
Romantic Warriors IV – Krautrock (Part 2) Is in the Works – Zeitgeist Media, the people who have brought us the great series of documentary films chronicling the history of progressive rock, are working on the second installment of their examination of German music. Krautrock 2 will focus on artists from Münich such as Guru Guru, Amon Düül II, Xhol Caravan, Kraan, Witthüser & Westrupp, and Popol Vuh. » Read more

2020-09-09
Simeon Coxe RIP – Simeon Coxe, best known for his experimental electronics in the band Silver Apples, has died at the age of 82. The band's 1968 debut album set the stage for both German electronic music and experimental punk music a decade later. Coxe died on September 8 from pulmonary fibrosis. » Read more

2020-09-05
Gary Peacock RIP – Legendary bassist Gary Peacock, veteran of many recordings and performances with Paul Bley, George Russell, Roland Kirk, Bill Evans, Tony Williams, and many more. » Read more

2020-07-22
Tim Smith RIP – Tim Smith, leader of the eccentric band Cardiacs, has died at the age of 59 after many years of health problems. Cardiacs was known for intense and complicated music that combined punk energy with the rhythmic and harmonic sophistication of progressive rock. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Visitors - Visitors – The brainchild of producer Jean-Pierre Massiera, Visitors was his project "band," intended to be a one-shot affair and go no further. Massiera utilized an expanded lineup featuring several...  (1995) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues