Progarchives, the progressive rock ultimate discography



Jazz Rock/Fusion

From, the ultimate progressive rock music website

simakDialog Demi Masa album cover
3.86 | 20 ratings | 6 reviews | 20% 5 stars

Write a review

from partners
Studio Album, released in 2009

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Salilana Pertama (Forever, Part 1) (14:01)
2. Salilana Kedua (Forever, Part 2) (6:46)
3. Tak Jauh Pertama (Not So Far, Part 1) (7:42)
4. Tak Jauh Kedua (Not So Far, Part 2) (9:11)
5. Trah Lor - Laras (Northern People - Voices) (2:28)
6. Trah Lor - Rupa (Northern People - Faces) (3:41)
7. Trah Lor - Tapak (Northern People - Prints) (3:46)
8. Karuhun (To Elders) (9:06)
9. Disapih (Separate Away) (13:16)

Total Time 69:57

Line-up / Musicians

- Riza Arshad / Fender Rhodes electric piano, Yamaha acoustic grand piano, Oberheim OB-X analog synthesizer
- Tohpati / electric & acoustic guitar
- Adhithya Pratama / bass
- Endang Ramdan / lead Sundanese kendang percussion, tambourine, claps, toys, vocals
- Erlan Suwardana / Sundanese kendang percussion, claps, toys, vocals

- Emy Tata / Sundanese kendang percussion, claps, toys, vocals (2)
- Mian Tiara / vocals (7)
- Dave Lumenta / soundscapes (8)

Releases information

CD Moon June MJR024 (USA 2009)

Thanks to clarke2001 for the addition
and to projeKct for the last updates
Edit this entry

Buy SIMAKDIALOG Demi Masa Music

SIMAKDIALOG Demi Masa ratings distribution

(20 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(20%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(40%)
Good, but non-essential (30%)
Collectors/fans only (10%)
Poor. Only for completionists (0%)

SIMAKDIALOG Demi Masa reviews

Showing all collaborators reviews and last reviews preview | Show all reviews/ratings

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by Easy Money
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator / Retired Admin
3 stars Feel like you've heard it all, nothing new on the horizon, then it's time to check out Indonesian jazz fusion from Jakarta via a brilliant five piece group called Simak Dialog. Analog keyboards, guitar, bass and duo Sundanese kendang drummers make up this ensemble that sounds like jazz fusion from a small village, not a downtown bar, but is still modern and sophisticated nonetheless. Listening to this CD conjures up a plethora of possible influences including Chick Corea, Alan Holdsworth, Gabor Szabo, Soft Machine, Herbie Mann, Sun Ra, Santana, Sun City Girls and early Weather Report; these are just some of the artists that come to mind as this band effortlessly combines multiple styles into every song.

Probably the most striking element to this band, especially for being a fairly high energy fusion band at times, is the total lack of a jazz or rock trap set. Instead, you get the two percussionists playing the kendang which is constructed somewhat similar to a conga drum and has a similar sound. The lack of drum set gives this band an earthy traditional sound that really sets them apart. I also enjoy the total lack of digital instrumentation and fake physical modeling whatever. Keyboardist Riza Arshad plays a real Fender Rhodes, as well as an acoustic piano and occasional very tasteful and subtle analog synthesizer. Likewise, guitarist Tohpati keeps it real with simple electric and acoustic guitars with a minimum of sound processing.

The duo kendang drummers constantly define Simak Dialog's sound, but on top of that the others take the band into fairly aggressive 70s styled fusion, as well as tight rhythmic Indonesian minimalism, quiet spacy moments and groovy acoustic gypsy jazz. Very little post production goes into these songs, but the band keeps the sound textures interesting, especially Arshad with his Oberheim synth that adds a distinctly Asian metallic buzzing drone in economical doses. Great effort from a band that is taking jazz fusion to new and exciting places.

Review by Ivan_Melgar_M
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars As most people here know, I'm no a particular fan of Jazz/Fusion, but about a couple months ago I listened "Tohpati Ethnomission" and was really impressed with the sound of this Indonesian band and the way they combine the experimental jazz essence and the ethnic influences of their country, so when I received a package from "Moonjune Records" containing two releases by "SIMAK DIALOG" from Indonesia with "Tohpati" in the guitars, decided to play this albums before anything else, and wasn't disappointed at all, so here I am trying to review "Demi Masa"

Normally people identify the word fusion with Jazz, as if this terms were the two sides of the same coin, but that's not accurate, Fusion really means the blend of different styles and genres into a new and original final product, and if there is a band that really fuses genres, sounds, styles and even musical flavours it's SIMAK DIALOG.

As in the case of TOHPATI ETHNOMISSION is clear that the band gives great importance to their ethnic inheritance, this becomes obvious when you notice they don't use traditional drums, replacing them with "Sundanese Kendang Percussion", but SIMAK DIALOG also privilege the classical Progressive Jazz approach with clear MAHAVISHNU ORCHESTRA influence,mainly in Tohpati's guitar and Riza Arshad's wonderful performance in the electric piano.

I won't even try to make a song by song review, not only because the richness of the blend, but also because not being a Jazz expert, would hardly make justice to what is happening here, so I feel more comfortable talking about my favourite tracks.

The first song that really caught my attention is "Salilana Kedua" (Forever Part II), in which the band places the emphasis in the ethnic/folk aspect of their music, the use of Indonesian percussion ad the dramatic choirs at the beginning of the song, blended with the exquisite guitar of "Tohapati" plus the mysterious beauty and the oriental sound gave me goosebumps. But that's not all, around the fifth minute and after a hand clapping section, the music morphs into some form of sophisticate jazz with splendid keyboards....Just impressive.

The melancholic "Tak Jauh Pertana" (Not so Far Part I) is also a high point of the album, the more traditional intro in the vein of "MAHAVISHNU ORCHESTRA" announces a different approach, but when we are talking about SIMAK DIALOG, it's hard to guess what is coming next, because they seem to improvise blending the different sounds and influences in their repertoire, again an amazing track.

The "Trah Lor" (Northern People ) trilogy [Laras (Voices), Rupah (Faces) and Tapak (Prints) ] is simply outstanding, but my favourite of the three is the first one "Trah Lor - Laras" where "Riza Arshad" plays an outstanding piano mixture of Jazz and Classical music with soft percussion enhancing the sound, simply delightful.

Last but not least, I must mention the 13:16 minutes epic "Disapih"(Being Away), a solid demonstration of what Progressive Jazz means, being that very few bands can make so many radical changes without being jamming, and if we add the are extremely complex keyboards - guitar interplay plus the solid rhythm section with the bassist Adhithya Pratama" in the lead, we have a breathtaking masterpiece that flows with energy and coherence from start to end.

It's hard for a member of the Symphonic Prog Team in Prog Archives like me, to rate a Jazz- Fusion album, being that it's a completely different style of music to what I listen in daily bases, but I would need to be deaf not to notice the brilliant performance and the touch of the genius in the composition, so with extreme confidence I will rate "Demi Masa" with four solid stars, being evident that we are before an extremely good album that any lover of great music should have.

Review by kev rowland
4 stars To be honest, I'm not as au fait with Indonesian music as maybe I should be based on the evidence of this. It is worth listing the musicians and their instruments as it may just give an idea of what they are doing. The band was formed in Jakarta in 1993 by Riza Arshad (electric piano, acoustic grand piano, synths), and he is joined by Tohpati (electric and acoustic guitar), Adhithya Pratama (bass), Endang Ramdan (lead Sundanese kendang percussion, tambourine, claps, toys, vocals) and Erlan Suwardana (Sundanese kendang percussion, claps, toys, vocals) with a few guests. I have been listening much more to jazz in recent years and the breadth and passion of this album is just breathtaking. At times it is very melodic, with either the keys or guitar being the lead, yet at others it is much more 'free'.

This could never be considered background music as it demands close attention to what is going on. Of course a major part of this music is the percussion which provides a very different flavour to that from many jazz albums. Tohpati provides some stunning guitar, but it is the way that he combines with Riza that is the highlight. Take "Tak Jauh Pertama" for example where Riza provides most of the melodic lead with fairly simple chords, but what makes the song work is the note density and sheer bravado playing of Tohpati. At times his guitarwork reminds me of John McLaughlin, and if I was to pick just one act to compare Simak Dialog with it would be when McLaughlin and Carols Santana combined together for a few albums but it would be justifiable to mention Pat Metheny or Return To Forever, yet none of these tags do this justice.

If you enjoy jazz and fusion then this is an essential purchase.

Review by Mellotron Storm
4 stars SIMAKDIALOG are from Indonesia and this is their first album with Moon June Records but their fourth studio album overall. Released in 2009 we have no drummer but two Sudanese kedang percussionists who also add handclaps, toys and vocals. We also get a guest adding the very same things. I'm such a big fan of the keyboardist especially his Fender Rhodes playing. We also get bass and guitar with this five piece then a guest singer on track 7 and another guest doing soundscapes on track 8. This is a long one at 70 minutes and I could have done without the final two tracks where we get a similar style with lots of percussion while the guitar and piano take turns soling over top.

This is a great album though as I'm reminded right now playing that 14 minute opener. Love that guitar late soloing over top while electric piano and beats underpin the proceedings. The second part being track two is the most ethnic sounding piece on here but that changes late when the guitar and electric piano arrive. Great section and a nice contrast with what went on before. "Not So far Part 1" is light and breezy but interesting. I like the guitar late when it becomes the focus. The second part is fairly mellow with picked guitar and percussions but it will become the bass, electric piano and percussion show. Another multi part track comes in "Northern People" divided into three songs. Some spacey stuff on that final part and female vocals which are nice changes.

Overall I have to hit 4 stars this is just too good in my opinion and a little different.

Latest members reviews

4 stars ProgArchives has some really strange albums & bands in it's database. Albums that cannot be labeled in any way. This album is on this exclusive list. Eclectic is probably the right word. Fusion too is suitable, although fusion = a mix of two styles. Demi Masa is not. Demi Masa is a mix of a l ... (read more)

Report this review (#323616) | Posted by toroddfuglesteg | Wednesday, November 17, 2010 | Review Permanlink

5 stars simakDialog's Demi Masa, one of the best releases of 2009, rejuvenates fusion music and takes it to an entirely new level. The soloists are extraordinarily good on this combination of guitars, electric bass guitar, and keyboards with Indonesian kedang percussion, assisted by percussionist/vocalist ... (read more)

Report this review (#282861) | Posted by iiqjazz | Friday, May 21, 2010 | Review Permanlink

Post a review of SIMAKDIALOG "Demi Masa"

You must be a forum member to post a review, please register here if you are not.


As a registered member (register here if not), you can post rating/reviews (& edit later), comments reviews and submit new albums.

You are not logged, please complete authentication before continuing (use forum credentials).

Forum user
Forum password

Copyright Prog Archives, All rights reserved. | Legal Notice | Privacy Policy | Advertise | RSS + syndications

Other sites in the MAC network: — jazz music reviews and archives | — metal music reviews and archives

Donate monthly and keep PA fast-loading and ad-free forever.