Jazz Fusion Progressive world music
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Discus: 1st (CD, 61:32);
MELLOW RECORDS MMP 365 1998/1999
Website: http://www.discusprog.com/

How often do you hear symphonic prog/ jazz rock fusion 
coming from Indonesia? For this reviewer, this was my first 
experience. It's hard to confess but this release was so 
difficult to digest I simply set it aside for a very long time. As 
a reviewer -- that's my choice. Now, after focusing my 
energies on pushing unique jazz rock fusion -- it was time to 
unearth Discus and listen again. This CD-R Iwan Hasan 
sent me was the most dense and complex collage of genres 
I had ever heard. Imagine meaty metal, jazz pop, Balinese 
Gamelan, violin like Ponty, axe like McLaughlin meets 
MacAlpine, and symphonic prog all assailing you at the 
same time. Help! But thanx to "delete track" and the advent 
of excerpts via audio editing software, the irksome jazz pop 
with vox is a "memory" and you have excellent jazz rock and 
engaging Indo-Bali-ethnic prog left to listen to. 

I quote Hasan and the record label blurb here, "We are a 
progressive rock band with a lot of influences ranging from 
jazz, classical, fusion, Gamelan, metal, electronic, 
impressionism, ambient, experimental, minimalism, jazzy 
vocal pop, etc. We are influenced by a lot of different music, 
even contrasting music. I think The Dixie Dregs, 
Mahavishnu Orchestra, Rush, Chick Corea, Gamelan music,
Photo by Jerry Kranitz of Aural-Innovations.com
Il Berlione (great Japanese progressive band), Allan 
Holdsworth, New York Voices, Kansas, King Crimson, Flora 
Purim, Claude Debussy, Maurice Ravel, Philip Glass, John 
Doan, Toru Takemitsu, Olivier Messiaen . . ." and Mellow 
says "Discus’ music could be described as progressive rock 
influenced by traditional Indonesian music (i.e. gamelan), 
jazz and jazz fusion, contemporary classical, and 
electronically generated ambient soundscapes. Some metal 
and some light jazzy pop, too. Their most successful 
compositions, however, seem to be the complicated 
gamelan-contemporary classical-prog-fusion epics."

Hasan is the mastermind behind most of this release but 
why is it so diverse? I quote Hasan again, "When we wrote 
the album we weren't really sure what kind of band we were. 
Some members thought we were jazz some others thought 
we were rock some thought we were world music etc. We 
just did all of the styles we can do as a collective unit with 
such varied backgrounds." 

So after everyone contributed their own ideas as well as 
Hasan's wide taste in music you are deluged with a "traffic 
jam" out of a Salvador Dali vision. Some parts are irritating 
to listen to but others, like "Doc's Tune", are amazingly 
complex yet a unified impact of fusion excellence! The 
lengthy tracks like fugues may overwhelm some but those of 
us who enjoyed lengthy, axe exchanges between 
McLaughlin and Santana on Love, Devotion, and 
Surrender, will find a welcome nostalgia rush of fusion.
This semi-rare release will confuse, surprise, and ultimately 
entertain eccentric, eclectic prog and fusion fans. Get ready
for one heck of a wild ride! Recommended one-of-a-kind music.

		~   John W. Patterson, EER-MUSIC.com

Personnel: Iwan Hasan: Guitar, 21-String 
Harpguitar, Balinese Rindik, Electronic Percussion & 
Lead Vocals 
Anto Praboe: Flute, Soprano, Alto & Tenor 
Saxophones, Clarinet & Bass Clarinet 
Eko Partitur: Violin & Electronics 
Fadhil Indra: Keyboards, Background Vocals 
Hayunaji: Premier Drums & Electronic Percussions 
Kiko Caloh: 5-string & fretless Bass 
Krisna Prameswara: Keyboards, MIDI percussion 
Noonie: Lead Vocals

Tracks: 1. Lamentation & Fantasia 
Gamelantronique (8:14)
a. Lamentation 
b. Fantasia Gamelantronique (for J. S.) 
2. For This Love (6:18) 
3. Doc's Tune (7:47)
4. Condissonance (trio for violin, bass 
clarinet & 21-string Harpguitar) (5:54)
5. Dua Cermin (5:41)
6. Wujudkan! (4:39) 
7. Violin Metaphysics (music for violin & 
digital delay) (5:40)
8. Anugerah (4:11)
9. Contrasts (incl. the traditional theme 
"Gambang Suling") (12:57)
a. Opening & Meditation
b. Gambang Suling 
c. Q/A & Odd Time Improvisations 
d. Ostinato (Metal Attack!)
e. Lydian Piano Theme & Minor Dance 
f. Gambang Suling





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