Monday, November 9, 2009

Malaikat Dan Singa

Seeing Arrington de Dionyso's Old Time Relijun was always something incredible. I remember moving to Olympia many years ago and the popular basement bands were Old Time Relijun and the Gossip, two bands that had a certain intensity that made rock music feel new; somewhere in between the imagined feeling of seeing early Chuck Berry shows and the imagined feeling of trying to make noise music before electricty. Old Time Relijun was always something I appreciated, loved live, but could never totally feel when transfered to tape and put to compact disc.
After seeing his new project (namely, Arrington de Dionysio's Malaikat Dan Singa) a few times this summer, I had a feeling this was something that was going to come across in any format or realm it chose to exist in. It's intense, trance-like approach is like taking the best of Old Time Relijun and looping it. The lyrics are all in Indonesian and are, from my understanding, mostly translations Arrington did of William Blake poems.
The album that this project spawned from was just released last week on K Records. I picked up a copy from Arrington while playing a show at his house, on the day that just so happened to be the album's release date (have i mentioned that i love olympia?), and was at first a little disappointed to see that it did not feature the band that he plays out with live. The powerhouse team of Markly Morrison and Andrew Dorsett (owners of the Brown Interior tape label and members of LAKE) make any group better and Angelo Spencer is the perfect accomplice to Arrington's retro-tribal-noise. But, much of album is just Arrington and album engineer, Karl Blau. Though I love both of their work, I was worried it wouldn't have the raw power of the band. Thankfully, this is not so.
It's pretty much as tripped out, rocking and trance-enducing as it gets. One of the best albums I've heard this year, and certainly the most innovative album from (what I would call) a rock band that I've heard in a real long time. Highly recommended.
Arrington de Dionyso's Malaikat Dan Singa- Mani Malaikat (there's also a tripped out video for this, with an english translation)

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