Dwiki Dharmwan is one of Indonesia’s most prominent musicians – a cultural icon in his homeland. Dwiki is an accomplished pianist, keyboardist, composer, arranger, performer, peace activist, and a true cultural ambassador of his beloved country. He has forged a very successful career (one that already spans more than 30 years), performing in over 60 countries with both solo and collective projects. (Dwiki's band, Krakatoa, remains one of Indonesia's most famous bands ever.) This 2015 release was his first on a major Western label, Moonjune, and he has found a home that really suits him. Not only has this given Dwiki the opportunity to have his work heard by a far wider audience, but has allowed him access to some incredible musicians. So, while he contents himself by providing Fender Rhodes Electric Piano, Mini Moog, Hohner Clavinet, Hammond Organ, Korg Synth, Acoustic Piano and vocals (the album is mostly instrumental), he is joined by Jimmy Haslip (bass), Chad Wackerman (drums), Dewa Budjana and Tohpati share guitar duties (although not on the same songs) plus Jerry Goodman provides electric violin on one song. It is often a very Western sounding album, but I Nyoman Windha (Gamelan Jegog, Balinese Kendang, Suling vocals) also has an important part to play/
This just doesn’t sound like an album that has been released in the last few years, but sounds as if it is a lost gem from the Seventies, bringing forth influences and touches of bands such as Weather Report and John McLaughlin. While some of the songs sound highly rehearsed and tight, there are others such as “Jembrana’s Fantasy” that are far more free and improvisational and style, and it is here where the guys move away from classic fusion into an area far move Gamelan influenced.
The sound is warm throughout, aided by the incredible warmth of Jimmy’s bass, and his partnership with Chad cannot be understated, as they seem to always know exactly where each needs to be to provide the support for what is happening above. Highly recommended for anyone who loves classic fusion