Exposé Online banner

Ligro — Dictionary 3
(Moonjune MJR072, 2015, CD)

by Paul Hightower, 2015-08-25:

Dictionary 3 Cover art

Ligro is back – huzzah! These three tremendously talented Indonesian musicians are almost single-handedly affirming instrumental jazz-rock as an indispensible art form. Sure, there are some reference points, namely guitarist Agam Hamzah’s nods to early Mahavishnu-era John McLaughlin and mid 70s Jeff Beck, but he uses these as a jumping off point. His vocabulary is astounding, encompassing frenzied atonal shredding, honey-sweet blues, Crimson-esque controlled ferocity, or good old jazz comping. But what perhaps most sets Hamzah (and the band as a whole) apart from his peers are the nods to traditional Indonesian music, best seen during the detuned meditations of “Pentagonal Krisis.” When the song starts to roll, Hamzah’s bandmates bassist Adi Darmawan and drummer Gusti Hendy prove themselves his equal. Darmawan – with his monk’s robes and shaved head – may look like a Buddhist man of peace, but his bass playing is a tour de force of chops and tasteful intensity. And Hendy is simply one of the finest young drummers alive today. His ability to simultaneously hold down a rhythmic center for the group while contributing an equal share of quality improvising is nothing short of astounding. And improvising is what this album is about. Each of the five tracks includes ample space for the trio to journey into uncharted realms of musical exploration, without ever losing their way or each other. The results are unpredictable, refreshing and wholly satisfying. What Ligro have now accomplished over three albums should firmly establish them at the forefront of modern fusion.


by Peter Thelen, 2015-08-25:

Sometimes bands have what it takes to keep things interesting when growing compositions out of improvisation, and sometimes they just don’t. Surely this Indonesian trio offers the creative mastery to make it work throughout this, their third album, and their second for Moonjune. The five long composed tracks essentially develop in a purely improvisational way, drawing elements of jazz, rock, and funk, wandering freely through purely instrumental landscapes, working their way up the walk with sure-footed brilliance and hitting some powerful peaks along the way, with careful attention to brilliant melodic finesse at every new turn. While guitarist Agam Hamzah may seem like the de-facto focal point on most of these five pieces (averaging around 12+ minutes each), it’s bassist Adi Darmawan and drummer Gusti Hendy that provide the structural foundation, growing the intensity and pulling back at will; the more one listens to the trio working together, the importance of the rhythm section to their free-flowing intensity becomes absolutely clear. The opening track “Bliker 4” also includes guest keyboardist Ade Irawan, who adds an additional dimension to their otherwise gritty sound with his flourishes of piano and organ sounds. The ambitious band composition “20th Century Collaseu” is partly based on Messiaen’s “Quartet for the End of Time” and Anton Webern’s “Opus 28,” building up very gently, then suddenly exploding into a flaming inferno of chops for the remainder of its near-twelve minute duration. Each time one listens to this disc, some new revelations are in store. In short, there’s a lot here to get excited about.


Filed under: New releases , 2015 releases

Related artist(s): Ligro

More info
http://ligro.bandcamp.com/album/dictionary-3

Latest news

2019-01-31
Keyboardist Ingo Bischof R.I.P. – Keyboard player Ingo Bischof, best known as the longtime keyboard player of German band Kraan, passed away on January 29th, 2019. Bischof was born January 2, 1951 in Berlin-Kreuzberg and joined Kraan in 1975. » Read more

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


Previously in Exposé...

Grobschnitt - Grobschnitt – Prog fans have been enjoying a renaissance of vintage prog re-issues. Albums that either never made it to CD or were transferred poorly to begin with are being released for your pleasure. Premier...  (1999) » Read more

The Muffin Men - Baker's Dozen & Live @ The Cavern – The Muffin Men are a UK based act that is heavily versed in the fine art of being a Frank Zappa tribute band that features old Mothers vocalist Jimmy Carl Black. Baker's Dozen serves as a...  (2005) » Read more

Stella Maris - To the Promised Land – It can be difficult to review something like this latest offering from Germany’s Stella Maris. The musicians sound so sincere and believe in what they’re doing, and put a great deal of craft and...  (2005) » Read more

Frigg - Frigg – Not to be confused with the German Frigg, a jazz quartet led by guitarist Bert Wrede, this Finnish seven-piece is an acoustic fiddle orgy. Five members play fiddle at least part-time, bringing to mind...  (2004) » Read more

Rapoon - The Fires of the Borderlands – Take a simple repeating ascending pattern of three notes and run it through a dense whirlwind of heavy processing, changing patterns and directions from time to time, and one might get a rough idea of...  (1998) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues