Indonesian guitarist Tohpati Bertiga spews lightning strikes across the studio, enamored by his slick-picking breakouts and shrewd use of space. He's a seasoned vet, noted by his prominent session duties and affiliation with the ultra-progressive jazz-rock band simakDialog.
This energized trio date broadcasts a spirited kinship that translates to disc in exuberant fashion. A multifaceted mix, the artists gel with a conglomerate of funk, progressive-rock and groove-centric workouts, highlighted by the leader's technical wizardry and impassioned mode of attack.
The trio cuts to the chase on "Middle East." Here, the guitarist dishes out an indigenous and fluently executed Middle Eastern folk vamp, contrasted with edgy distortion-tinged chord clusters atop a pulsating cadence. Tohpati dances around the primary theme during the bridge and highlights his jazz improvisation skills, woven into more of a prog rock vibe.
With torrid note-bending intervals, Tohpati rockets into hyperspace via scathing single-note lines. The trio revisits the primary theme for the finale, culminating into a persuasive East-meets-West musical forum, where finesse, firepower and art reveal a congruous soundstage.
I love jazz because next to my kids, it's the love of my life.
I was first exposed to jazz by Joe Rico from a tiny station in Niagara Falls in 1954 when I was 13.
The best show I ever attended was Maynard Ferguson who blew the roof off Massey Hall in the late 50s.
My advice to new listeners is to listen to everything you can and then listen again.