With their constantly changing lineup, Malaysia’s Space Gambus Experiment isn’t a band that is likely to be accused of settling into a singular genre, let alone specific instrumentation. It's almost as if they have a mountain of sound sources to choose from, and this one delves into even more new panoramas of aural impressions. This 3 track EP is from a recording that resulted during the pre-show rehearsals before performing at the Ipoh Other Festival 2015.
One constant with SGE is band director Kamal Sabran, who doubles on oud as well as a Turkish saz. Kamal keeps you guessing as to what may happen next, as he formulates note passages that occasionally erupt into sonic mayhem. Beneath the surface, the rise and fall of the rhythm section is expertly manipulated by both Azmil Mokhtar (hand drumming) and Sang Nabil Utama (electric drum kit).
Manuevering into the deep, Nexus Polaris’ electric bass roams between locking into a groove and exploring the outer reaches of melody, with occasional suggestions that this record could become something you might hear on the ECM jazz label. Rounding out the mix is Eric Hausmann on understated washes of electric guitar and power chords that rise and swell.
A new SGE release is always a curious mystery until you hear it several times. I find myself experiencing new textures and elements that I hadn’t noticed, even after my third listen. Just in time for Hari Raya celebrations, you just may enjoy this while stuck in holiday traffic, and at the end of the day with good friends.
released June 29, 2016
Kamal Sabran: Gambus, Cumbus Saz
Azmil Mokhtar: Buffalo drum, Korg Wavedrum
Nexus Polaris: 6 String Bass
Sang Nabil Utama: Electronic Drum Kit
Eric Hausmann: Guitar, Glissentar
Recorded at Spill Haus (Ipoh Malaysia)
Produced by Eric Hausmann