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  Image: CD Cover: MoonJune Records Tohpati Ethnomission: Save The Planet  
Save The Planet  
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Jakarta, Indonesia's Tohpati has already established a reputation as one of progressive music's most dynamic new voices on guitar -- documented by his work with MoonJune recording artists, simakDialog. [Check out his stellar work on their Patahan (MJR015) and Demi Masa (MJR024) albums.]With his new MoonJune release, Save the Planet, his first as a band leader, Tohpati makes a strong case for his inclusion among the top ranks of guitarists in the world today. Referencing such impeccable influences as Terje Rypdal, John McLaughlin, John Scofield, and Robert Fripp, he remains every bit his own axeman -- equally at ease unspooling fleet-fingered chromatic runs, intervallic leaps, pastoral melodies, buoyant fusion, sinister metal crunch, country twang, or enigmatic, freely-improvised soundscapes.Possessing an array of soulful, meaty tones, Tohpati spices up the proceedings through sparing and tasteful use of pitch shifting, ring modulation, delays, and MIDI guitar synth patches, all the while retaining an emotive, decidedly organic quality.Tohpati serves notice that he and his Ethnomission band are a force to be reckoned with on the world music stage on this sizzling debut.
TRACKSClick on any highlighted track title to listen to individual audio samples, or listen to them all on the player to the right.
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3. Drama (1:47)
4. Ethno Funk (8:38)
5. Gegunungan (Gateway Of Life) 2:56
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9. Perang Tanding (Battle Between Good & Evil) (8:16)
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TOHPATI: guitars, midi synth guitar
DIKI SUWARJIKI: suling (Sundanese flute)
ENDANG RAMDAN: Indonesian percussion (kendang, gong, kenong)
DEMAS NARAWANGSA: drums, Indonesian percussion (rebana, kempluk)
All compositions and arrangements by Tohpati
Recorded by Irwan, at Artsound, Jakarta, Indonesia
Mixed by Eko Sulistyo. Mastered by G. Temmy.
Produced by Tohpati.
Executive Producer: Leonardo Pavkovic
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"... an unforgettable experience for the listener ... all the tracks are powerful and interesting ... Tohpati's guitar is breathtaking ... from fluid Jazz passages to experimental sections and mystic moments ... just brilliant."

-Ivan Melgar, ProgArchives

"... the music is more than good ... every segment of this album deserves the highest ratings and it surely receives them."

-Nikola Savi?, ProgSphere

"... Save The Planet is the most inspired guitar / fusion album I�ve heard in ages.

"... they can hold their own with any fusion band in the world. Yet the real talent is Tohpati. His playing shifts gracefully and breathlessly between complex structure and soloing, prog and fusion, damask beauty and rock detritus. My estimation of the man�s ability grew by leaps and bounds after listening to this album. The articulate opening track, the sentimental �Sacred Dance� and the ferocious soloing on �Ethno Funk� establish early that Tohpati is both a top-shelf fusion guitarist and a gifted songwriter (no six minutes of mindless jamming here). I have to believe this would make a lot of critic�s top ten fusion list for 2010 if given broader exposure, and that a line of willing collaborators would form here in the West. In fact, this may be the best Moonjune release I�ve heard yet; could it be a new flagship for the label has arrived?"

-Connolly & Company

"... Tohpati's Strat scatters notes like jagged shards over an airy mattress of jubilation ... instrumental pyrotechnics set off a brewing payload ... a new contender on the world fusion scene."

-Elias Granillo, Sea of Tranquility

"Probably the salient feature to this recording is the fiery brilliant guitar technique of Tohpati. Easily in a class with the greats of modern Asian fusion such as Pranna, McLaughlin, Shankar and Ranjit Barot, Tohpati's guitar lines burn with fierce intensity and display an extremely polished technique."

-JS, Prog Archives

"It�s like taking some of Frank Zappa�s musical brilliance and adding in Thelonious Monk�s sense of timing and then putting the both of them into Tohpati�s Indonesian blender. The resulting elixir is an album of amazing progressive rock/ jazz fusion that is tighter than a Japanese hotel room. Save the Planet is so intricate that there are moments that sound like they must have taken years to put together. Boys and girls, this is pure genius. "

-Doug Morrissey , Prog Rock Music Talk

"... Save the Planet is a treasure trove of manifold delights designed to sate the most demanding ear."

-Mark S. Tucker, FAME (Folk & Acoustic Music Exchange)

"In the world of guitar-driven jazz fusion, laced with world music, it has typically been a westerner who learns and ensconces themselves in another ethnic culture; processing, packaging, and exporting a digestible product back for listeners to experience. The absorption of jazz, rock, and fusion in Indonesia has produced some exciting results over the years, with original groups such as SimakDialog, and its virtuoso guitarist, Tohpati. His solo group, Ethnomission, puts jazz fusion and world music on notice with the stimulating Save The Planet. The authentic, homegrown sound that spans eleven compositions, with indigenous song titles, was captured and recorded entirely in Jakarta, Indonesia.

"Tohpati's guitar sounds here are significantly different than with SimakDialog, where keyboardist/leader Riza Arshad is a noticeable and ever-present factor. Instead, electric and midi synth guitar rule the day, answered by the Sundanese flute and soundscapes of Diki Svwajiki. Indonesian percussionist Engang Ramdam, also from SimakDialog, joins Tohpati, while Demas Narawangsa adds more of the same and augments the sound with conventional drumming. The music shifts and pulls in an intricate tug of war between tightly played riffs and a wide array of drums and percussion. Indira Hardjodikoro's bass guitar balances out the tension, hitting a Stanley Clarke moment or two on "Inspirasi Baru," but the deep, more Tony Levin-like punch of his sound is felt throughout most of the recording.

"Different thoughts as to who the Stratocaster-wielding Tohpati sounds like on different songs are inevitable. "Drama" and "Ethnofunk" draw John McLaughlin and Robert Fripp comparisons, while "Pesta Rakyat" has more of the Americana tone of Steve Morse or Nels Cline. Topathi's overdubbing on the closing "Amarah" reflects what it might sound like if Terje Rypdal was soloing over Metallica guitarist Kirk Hammett's staccato riffs. Tohpati does not settle into any one template throughout the CD, and keeps the group involved at every turn, delivering joyous kinetic music. Save the Planet, as well as Tohpati's work with SimakDialog, is well worth checking out."

-Mark Redlefsen, All About Jazz

Tohpati is a renowned guitarist in his native Indonesia, although considered to be one of the finest guitarists in the world among those familiar with his body of work. With influences ranging from John Scofield to Robert Fripp, and Terje Rypdal to Pat Metheny, Tohpati's guitar work is always fresh, compelling and unpredictable. His playing is stellar, and his technique, flawless. He is equally at home in a variety of diverse musical settings, as his extensive body of recorded and live performance work will attest.

Tohpati began playing classical guitar at the age of ten, and his talents and reputation quickly blossomed. While in his early twenties, he joined the Indonesian jazz band, simakDialog, in 1994. The move helped further expand and define his musical identity, as the Jakarta-based outfit is well known for their intuitive musical interplay and uninhibited, expansive solos.

Tohpati recorded three solo albums with Sony Music and played on three simakDialog albums prior to becoming a MoonJune artist. Since that time he has played on two more simakDialog releases, on MoonJune Records -- 2007's Patahan (MJR015), and '09's Demi Masa (MJR024) -- and released his first international album as a leader and featured artist, Tohpati Ethnomission's "Save The Planet".

He stays constantly in demand as a band leader, support musician, performer, composer and creative collaborator -- and in many different musical situations. Tohpati has performed all over the globe, remaining a very busy musician who rarely sits still.

MoonJune is pleased and very proud to produce this outstanding guitarist. We are as eager as his continually-growing legion of worldwide fans to hear what will be coming next from this brilliant rising star on the world progressive music scene.

Image: MoonJune Records artists, Tohpati Ethnomission.



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