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

2020-01-21
Gong Announces UK Tour for 2020 – Having spent the last few years touring the world, including dates in Japan with psych legend Steve Hillage, multiple headline European tours and festivals, America’s Cruise to the Edge festival, a South America headline tour, and a headline performance at Tomorrow Festival in China, the band have won the hearts of both traditional and modern Gong fanbases. During this live journey, Gong has delved further into the truly psychedelic, exploratory, and mind-expanding side of the music. » Read more

2020-01-15
Carlos Alvarado RIP – Carlos Alvarado, pioneering composer, multi-instrumentalist and pioneer of progressive rock and electronic experimental music in Mexico, passed away January 14th, 2020 at age 68 after a two year battle with cancer.  » Read more

2020-01-12
Wolfgang Dauner RIP – Pianist Wolfgang Dauner, one of the pioneers of both European free jazz and jazz rock, has died at the age of 84. With his own groups and with the United Jazz+Rock Ensemble, his playing and compositions were a prominent presence in European jazz from the mid-60s until just recently. » Read more

2020-01-12
Michael Allison RIP – Michael Allison, who since 1997 has been recording as Darshan Ambient, passed away on January 9th after a long and brave battle with cancer. He has been at at the forefront of the new ambient/electronic music scene, with over eighteen releases to his credit. » Read more

2020-01-10
Neil Peart RIP – One of rock music's defining drummers has died at the age of 67. Neil Peart's work with Rush provided one of the templates for percussion in rock, and he certainly ranks in the top ten most influential drummers of the 20th Century. Peart retired from playing in 2015 due to health issues, and succumbed to brain cancer on January 7, 2020. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Zao - Akhenaton – After a decade and a half, the zeuhl-fusion ensemble Zao are back with a release that is a real treat. While the lineup has changed from the classic formation which included Didier Lockwood on violin...  (1995) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues