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Gamelan of Central Java, Vol. 3: Modes & Timbres

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Audio CD, January 12, 2010
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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

The third volume of the series dedicated to Music of Central Java. The ideal follow up to the celebrated Nonesuch recordings of the '70s.


Volume III has plenty of variation with the gamelan featuring suling (flute) and rebab (spike fiddle) and different styles of vocal on alternate pieces. --Folk Roots

1. Ketawang Langen Gita Srinarendra
2. Ketawang Suba Kastawa
3. Ladrang Golong
4. Three Short Pieces From The Wayang Kulit Theatre
5. Macapat Asmaradana
6. Ketawang Puspa Warna
7. Ladrang Raja Manggala
8. Ladrang Sobrang

Product Details

  • Audio CD (January 12, 2010)
  • Original Release Date: 2010
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Felmay Records
  • ASIN: B002XLBC5G
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #748,970 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By D. Quinn on July 26, 2008
Format: Audio CD
As the title suggests, the focus of this cd is the exploration of modes (scales and tones) and timbres (the actual textures of the various instruments). This isn't for quite as academic a reason as you might initially suppose. The producer of the series, John Noise Manis, is addressing the issue of how we can break down the musical barriers that exist between Indonesian music and the sort of sounds and arrangements we in the Western world are accustomed to. By focusing in on certain timbres and elements of the pieces rather than presenting full orchestrations, it is hoped that people not accustomed to gamelan music may find it easier to grasp some of the fundamental individual sounds, parts and roles of the instruments.
I think this is an incredibly worthy project indeed, especially as this concept does not in any way cloud the overall musical quality of the music. It hasn't been `dumbed-down' (to my ears) and the musicians of STSI Surakarta have done an excellent job, especially when one considers that for them this will be perhaps a rather experimental release. There are tons of illuminating liner notes, and the music, as ever, has a wonderful jaunty yet relaxed feel - it's music you want to listen to outdoors, on a warm afternoon ideally!
Given the cross-pollenization of cultures, and despite the somewhat simplistic tastes of the many, it is surely only a matter of time before these `unusual' sonorities, scales and arrangements are embraced more widely and deeply by those in the West.
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