The music of Indonesia is now been one of my favorite genres in the world of Jazz and Progressive genre. Not only that the MoonJune label has been a favorite of mine since 2011 of hearing some amazing music, but hearing the music from the bands and artists of opening up the door to World Music. One of the artists who has a powerful improvisation and staggering proportions of virtuoso is guitarist Andre Dinuth. He is one of the most mind-blowing guitar players I’ve listened to.
He’s worked both in concert and in the recording studio along with being the top 6 guitarists including Tohpati and Dewa Budjana. Along his work both as a session musician and in the studio, he’s also fronted the Andre Dinuth Group. Alongside Andre on Guitar, it consists of Adhitya Pratama on Bass, Yandi Andaputra on Drums, and Marthin Siahaan on Keyboards. They have performed in several shows around Indonesia including the Java Jazz Festival and the Freedom Jazz Fest.
He’s released his second album entitled, Here With You which is release this year and it’s a follow-up to sole self-titled debut album released last year. I was so blown away from the moment I put the CD on. Andre has this cross-combination between Steve Vai, Alex Lifeson, John McLaughlin, and Frank Zappa. You never know when he will stop because there isn’t a sign for him to stop. He’s keeping the machine rolling in full speed.
The opening intro of Sahara starts off with a galloping introduction of the percussions between the drums and tabla followed by dueling melodies between DInuth and Mohamad Saat Syah’s suling flutes as Lesama’s organ adds the action of the spice including a mellowing piano section. On Sophie’s Song, Eugen Bounty’s clarinet brings a joyous warmth of relaxation.
Featuring a folky-fingerpicking-classical improvisation done by Andre himself on the acoustic guitar, you can hear bits of vocalizations during the melodies that he does and it is a touching composition that you can you can hold your heart on to. Farm-O-Country is a killer composition. Here, it shows that Andre has an amazing sense of humor in the wackiest style!
It’s this cross between Blue Oyster Cult, ELP’s Benny The Bouncer, and very much like an extended version of The Ren and Stimpy Show theme, is the kicker. There is a ragtime piano in the honky-tonk sound a-la Scott Joplin style and since I’ve mentioned wacky, when I say wacky, I mean for them going into a Rockabilly, Country music swing and very much…well almost giving Keith Urban, a gigantic middle finger.
Rote Island starts with the sounds of children laughing before going into a dancing rhythm with a clapping section. It has a Steve Howe-sque intro as it transforms into a joyous electric celebration with powerful riffs while Syah’s flute brings a somber walkthrough into a beautiful forest over the Solitude. One of the things I love about Dinuth is that he gives the members free-rein (creative control) on whatever they want to do come in front.
Barry Likumahuwa’s funky chicken bass lines come in swinging on Wy Knot. It’s this soul-blues-funk-fusion rock territory with increasing sections between Andre and Ricad’s tenor sax with a blaring tone. It shows that they were not having just a blast, but having a great time. And that’s what I like about bands/artists, you want to have a great time and focus on that and not deal with the stress.
Barry’s bass reminded me at times of Primus’ Les Claypool and Paul Jackson from Herbie Hancock’s Headhunters. It’s a powerful and in your face composition that you want to play until the sun comes up. This is now my fifth time listening Here With You. And again, I was so blown away by Andre Dinuth’s improvisation and I think he’s going to hit the big time internationally one day and hit not just the big time, but to see where he will go next.