MoonJune Records release two avant-electric jazz albums this month, Dictionary 3 by Indonesian trio Ligro and Abstract Random by Spanish/Serbian duo XaDu.
Ligro - Dictionary 3: After a nearly three-year absence, Indonesian jazz and fusion guitarist extraordinaire, Agam Hamzah, and his scintillating power trio make a powerful return to the spotlight with guns blazing! Ligro's Dictionary 3 makes good on all of the promise suggested by their 2012 international debut on MoonJune Records, Dictionary 2 - finding the group in commanding form, delivering a soulful, ambitious effort that rocks with brute force and conviction.
Featuring a special guest appearance by the young Indonesian jazz keyboard prodigy, Ade Irawan (who is now based in Los Angeles, and was 18-years-old at the time of the recording), the album ventures to domains which highlight the amazing versatility, depth and unbridled sense of adventure that has become this multifaceted group's trademark. Highlighted by the sometimes-explosive, sometimes-syncopated, but always highly engaging rhythms of renowned players, master bassist, Adi Darmawan -- one of Indonesia's busiest and most in-demand bass players -- and legendary drummer, Gusti Hendy (of the Indonesian mega pop-rock sensation Gigi), Dictionary 3 sees the band propelling each other to new musical heights, as they embark on a fresh journey that probes previously unexplored sonic terrain while keeping the accelerator mashed down to the floorboard!
XaDu - Abstract Random: A key advantage of playing complex instrumental music in a trio or quartet is the luxury of having one player free to keep the ball of melody in play while granting the other instrumentalists the freedom to harmonize, play counterpoint or just cut loose. This was the case for Dusan Jevtovic and Xavi Reija, when, along with bassist Bernat Hernandez and under Xavi’s name, they recorded 2014’s MoonJune release Resolution. Prior to that, though with Marko Djordjevic drumming, Dusan offered up 2013’s Am I Walking Wrong. Both of these trio releases pointed the way to a style of composition emphasizing melodic interplay and rhythmic complexity while not sacrificing the improvisatory nature that makes the music such a thrilling listen. In choosing to work as a two-man configuration called XaDu, Xavi and Dusan establish each composition with its intrinsic melodic and rhythmic components, then allow it to partially deconstruct as they explore the vast sonic palette of guitar and drumkit. Dusan’s guitar and pedalwork conjure a soundscape that can range from the introspective and almost ambient/atmospheric to the urgency of careening snowblind through a maelstrom of sound. Xavi is right in the vortex, coaxing riffs into life, laying chase to Dusan’s frenetic runs with his supremely musical tom work, or just falling away in a wash of cymbals when the wave of energy has crashed on the shore. Random Abstract bears witness to two musicians, working together to economically craft a very cinematic piece: math metal jazz and fuzzy fusion at the highest level. There is great joy to be found in listening to these two highly talented players coax only the very best from each other. XaDu is a most enthralling musical pairing, indeed.
[Source: MoonJune Records]