Band: Tohpati Ethnomission

CD Title: Mata Hati

Website:  https://tohpati.bandcamp.com   

Label:  Moonjune Records (2017)

Rating: Satisfying 3/5



There is no question that Tohpati is the most famous jazz guitarist to come out of Indonesia and Mata Hati is his latest musical release under the Ethnomission musical collective. His musical recordings date back to the late nineties and over the years heís performed with a number of different musical set-ups and over that time his performance style has grown ever more assured and adventurous. This release features nine compositions most around five or six minute range clocking in at a total of fifty one minutes. Stylistically there is a lot of Pat Methenyís approach to guitar performance set within compositions that display the grand style and scope of the best of The Mahavishnu Orchestra. These are complex numbers that build of powerful melodic cores but then deviate over and over again yet always coming back to that core melody or theme. Not everything is packed with notes however as there are plenty of moments where the music breathes in a very organic manner. The other thing that is unique to Tohpati is his incorporation of a wide range of Indonesian instrumental sounds and performance styles. This gives his music an added quality of uniqueness. He is a guitar player so expect to hear him soloing throughout, sometimes sounding jazzy, sometimes a little more rocky and sometimes soft and delicate, itís all here. Some of these compositions incorporate the suling bamboo flute, some the tarompet and some kendang percussion. Add that to the usual suspects of bass, drums and guitar and it winds up being a powerful combination. Fans of his previous work will find much to appreciate with this new release.