Exposé Online banner

Dwiki Dharmawan — So Far So Close
(Moonjune MJR075, 2015, CD)

by Peter Thelen, Published 2015-10-31

So Far So Close Cover art

Moonjune is never short on surprises when it comes to introducing outstanding jazz-rock acts from Indonesia, and keyboardist and composer Dwiki Dharmawan is just the latest of many, with So Far So Close, his first international release. Already a star in his own country, he is well known as a solo artist, collaborator, and a member of his fusion band Krakatau for over 30 years with eight full length releases, as well as other projects like his World Peace Orchestra. Here, Dharmawan is teamed up with renowned jazz bassist Jimmy Haslip (who also played on Dharmawan’s previous release, 2014’s Live in USA), famed drummer Chad Wackerman, Indonesian guitarists Tohpati and Dewa Budjana, I Nyoman Windha playing an assortment of traditional Indonesian instruments and vocals on what is perhaps the album’s most adventurous track, the ten minute “Jembrana’s Fantasy,” and on the opening track “Arafura” none other than Jerry Goodman on electric violin. The bulk of the pieces here echo the golden age of fusion from the early 70s onward through the mid-80s, occasionally recalling greats like Herbie Hancock and Chick Corea, but with his own unique stamp which brings in elements of the traditional sounds of West Java and Bali. The second cut, “Bromo,” honors East Java’s most famous volcano with beautiful and memorable melodies and a sound that may remind some listeners of the jazzier tendencies of Japanese band Kenso. Other standouts include the gracefully melodic “Whale Dance,” the more hard edged and funky “NYC 2050,” where Budjana graces the proceedings with a sterling guitar solo, and the album’s closer, “The Return of Lamafa,” where the ancient and traditional take a tour through the modern idiom of classical-informed jazz. All taken, So Far So Close is proof positive that fusion is alive and well.


Filed under: New releases, 2015 releases

Related artist(s): Tohpati, Jerry Goodman, Dwiki Dharmawan

Latest news

2019-10-06
Ginger Baker RIP – Legendary English drummer Ginger Baker has died at the age of 80. After coming to fame with Cream in the 60s alongside Eric Clapton and Jack Bruce, he became one of the most recognized and influential drummers of the rock era. On September 25, his family announced that he was critically ill, and on October 6 his death was confirmed. » Read more

2019-08-20
Alex's Hand Seeks Spa Treatment – American / European band Alex's Hand has a new album in the works called Hungarian Spa, which looks to be their biggest and best yet, featuring a large roster of guest musicians. They're seeking funding to take the project on the road, and are looking for help from the crowd of wisdom. » Read more

2019-06-05
Legendary Co-Founder of The 13th Floor Elevators Passes Away at Age 71 – Sadly, Roky Erickson passed away on May 31, 2019. Known as the father of psychedelic music and co-founder of the ground breaking 13th Floor Elevators, Roky had a profound influence on music from the 60s to today. Plagued by his own personal demons, Roky had a difficult life and is now free of these burdens. » Read more

2019-04-24
Help MoonJune Bring Great Music to Life – Like many music lovers around the world, we’ve been thrilled and amazed to hear the recordings that have been released by MoonJune from sessions at La Casa Murada in Spain. Such label stalwarts as Mark Wingfield, Markus Reuter, Asaf Sirkis, Tony Levin, Dusan Jevtovic, Vasil Hadzimanov, and many more have gathered in various combinations at the studio to produce some of the most creative music in recent years. Now, label head Leonardo Pavkovic is offering a compilation, La Casa Murada - MoonJune Sessions, Volume One, as a fundraiser for upcoming sessions. » Read more

2019-04-10
The Pineapple Thief to Tour North America – November and December of 2019 will see The Pineapple Thief bringing their music to Canada, Mexico, and the US, and famed drummer Gavin Harrison will be on board. The band has been touring extensively in Europe, but North America will be new territory for them. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Ars Nova - Transi – Transi is the second release from this Japanese trio, fronted by talented keyboardist Keiko Kumagai. Writing all the music and commanding an arsenal of analog and digital keys, she leads the group...  (1995) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues