Category: Essays on Music

Tentang Archipelago Festival

Some things are just meant to be. We were in the middle of our South East Asian trip Sep 2016 when I repeatedly expressed my anxiety about this thing I had in my mind to Madrim. I remember we were at Luang Prabang making a trip to an elephant village when I mentioned about creating […]

Mengulas ulasan musik

Jangan sampai ulasan musik di Indonesia hanya jadi alat pemuas ego yang buas, tapi juga jadi kuas analisa yang lugas dan bernas. Terlepas dari dampak yang dihasilkannya kepada industri musik, belum ada satu orang pun yang bisa (atau berani) merumuskan bagaimana cara menulis ulasan musik yang baik. Lalu ada komentar lain: Mungkin ada baiknya hal […]

Satu Nyawa Dengan Senyawa

“Katakan padaku, hai tukang kayu. Bagaimana caramu menebang kayu.” Bersama beberapa nomor lagu anak lainnya, “Hai Tukang Kayu” berkumandang, menyambut dan mengiringi penonton mencari kursi – beberapa saat sehabis gong tanda pertunjukkan dimulai menggelegar di Gedung Kesenian Jakarta, Kamis 22 Desember 2016. Pada awalnya saya bergidik, merasa kikuk dikawal nada-nada ceria ini namun setelah sesaat tampaknya […]

Tentang Cholil dan menjadi kerdil

Di sepanjang hidup, menulis pernah jadi tulang punggung edukasi, cara mencari nafkah dan cermin untuk berkaca. Setelah melaju terlalu cepat tanpa sempat melihat ke belakang, kini Ia saya jadikan sarana berbenah diri. Tidak sulit menemukannya di antara sesak manusia yang duduk di lobi Ace Hotel, Manhattan. Mungkin Cholil satu-satunya manusia di Midtown New York yang […]

Tubuhku Otoritasku

2013; Saya ada di ruangan yang sama dengan Kartika Jahja ketika dia merampungkan rekaman lagu Tubuhku Otoritasku, single pertama album MERAH, yang dirilis 11 Maret 2016 kemarin dalam format digital. Tiga tahun lalu saat Tika menuangkan gagasan-gagasan kritisnya  melalui lagu ini, perbedaan sudut pandang terhadap seksualitas dan identitas gender jelas tidak se-semrawut sekarang. Isu gender […]

Isyana Sarasvati: Anomali, revolusi, kompromi?

Saat Isyana merampungkan setengah porsi pertama aksi operanya malam itu, saya menghembuskan napas lega. Lalu dia memberikan gestur tambahan sambil tersenyum berbisik, “belum selesai.” Dan saya kembali menahan napas, sambil melirik kiri kanan. Isyana Sarasvati cukup membuat saya berpikir, apa yang dia bawa: revolusi atau anomali? Pemikiran ini menjadi semakin kompleks ketika saya menyaksikan dan […]

SFTC Short Talks – Artwarding Night

This very moment, Barasuara and Efek Rumah Kaca are two different bands with one true affinity: they are both raw & irrelevant. Iga Massardi’s all-star outfit hasn’t released anything digestible – the sextet’s existence is shyly surfacing thanks to gigs, word of mouth and hazy press coverage from curious journalists. The latter, is smoothly surviving […]

Big love for the most hated band in town

Written for Sounds from The Corner “Selamat ulang tahun, jangan jadi tua dan menyebalkan.” I think everyone should agree that in a gig, the word “backstage” often translated as something exclusive, secluded, or even sacred. Physically, backstage divides two worlds between audience and performer, but some people interpret this backstage thing as a separator between […]

Dekat: The long awaited anger

Written for Sounds From the Corner “Anger is never without a reason, but seldom with a good one” – Benjamin Franklin Well, this is certainly a good one. Reading an introduction email from Kamga mid September 2014, my head was besieged by question marks: Is this really the dude from Tangga? I have nothing against […]

Mondo Gascaro: Beauty by Definition

written for Sounds From the Corner It’s Sunday 16.34 mid June. You’re at the balcony, helplessly sitting on a wooden bench, sipping lemonade, laze and haze throughout the rest of the day. Everyone is out, the house is empty. Your body loosen up but your mind is boisterous, processing and rewinding several things happened during […]

Is Barasuara a Rock Band?

Written for Sounds From the Corner Producer Notes Today, what’s your first thought when you hear the word “Rock music”? Mine is Nickelback. During the 90s, for the sake of televised industrialisation, the infamous MTV had made the term “Rock Music” as this big and cramped empire, consisted of moguls with saturated video music, leather […]

Primitive (yet) innovative

Written for Sounds From the Corner’s producer notes “Hei matahari, setan api kehidupan. Hei matahari bola api kematian. Mimpi alam raya di tengah bimasakti. Sebuah awal juga akhir.” What is Matajiwa? Physically, it is Anda Perdana, one of the last gems from the 90s era, a truly soul powerhouse with genuine attitude. With Anda, sits […]

The Great Escape

An essay I made about UK music industry, published in Rolling Stone Indonesia, photos published in BBC Indonesia Selama tiga hari setiap tahunnya, Brighton, Inggris, disulap jadi kota musisi, disesaki lebih dari 400 band dari seluruh penjuru dunia. British Council mengutus para pegiat kancah musik lokal untuk “studi banding” ke The Great Escape Festival, Inggris. […]

Let the train decide

Written for Producer Notes Sounds From The Corner Looking back to the past is an important part of moving forward. To introspect is also, conceptually, to forecast. This is actually a bland conclusion that i established five minutes ago. The idea behind L’alphalpha’s Von Stufe Zu Stufe (VSZS) is a picturesque approach to embrace the journey, and […]

Pandai Besi: The Medium is the message

The Medium is the message – Marshall McLuhan Loads of things that I could say about this particular session but let’s start from one thing: How Pandai Besi enliven the message. Approximately six years ago, I was finishing an assignment for my BA, it was an in-depth reporting and I was doing a piece about […]

The Green Grunge Gentlemen

Written for Producer’s Notes in Sounds From The Corner How far consistency and honesty could take you and your music? We’re living in the era where everyone could make anything. Share everything. Today you could be Miley Cyrus twerking in music awards and next day you are Mother Teresa sending prayers to the poor. There […]

The Sophomore Integrity

In their second album, L’alphalpha’s imagination set them free from the prison of their agony – if you know what I mean   What is it that makes second albums the crux of the voyage? Post-recognition from the world, it is the feedbacks. It is the responses from the people, that often make bands re-think, re-adjust […]