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Tesla Manaf – a Man’s Relationship with His Fragile Area
“Guitarist / composer Tesla Manaf has subsequently developed a completely unique musical voice. Perhaps more importantly, he’s a daring young fellow who’s not afraid to take artistic chances. Classically-trained, he tired of that world’s rigidity and embarked on a career in jazz and improvised music in 2007. While his compositions contain some truly startling echoes from the fringes of avant-prog-rock’s “RIO” (Rock In Opposition) movement, Tesla’s music is executed with jazz-like flow without sacrificing precision or clarity. In Tesla’s hands, the seemingly contradictory influences of contemporary classical music, the sounds of his native Indonesia, and the forward-leaning rhythms of modern jazz consistently create interesting tensions. Perhaps that’s why so much of Tesla Manaf is so fresh and invigorating.
Tesla doesn’t fit the profile of a typical 21st century guitar slinger. Tesla plays a hollow-body electric and uses no effects, preferring to let the crystal-clear natural sound of his instrument carry the day. Drums, bass (electric and acoustic) and reeds (clarinet, mostly) are also played without processing or electronic effects; and with that same razor-sharp precision. Most startling of all is the fact that Tesla and the members of his backing band—each with a fully-developed and mature sound on their respective instruments—appear to be in their early twenties. Tesla’s pieces are wide-ranging, multi-sectioned, and full of bizarre twists, mind- boggling unisons, and crazy rhythms. Yet, there’s no shortage of warmer, more lyrical sounds. “Early Years,” for example, is truly poignant. The almost Medieval-flavored “Chin Up” has a hocketed melody, and then takes off on a “Greensleeves”-inspired folk-jazz tangent, with Hulhul’s clarinet singing a simple melody over Tesla’s lovely arpeggios. This breaks down into a composed section that alternates the gentle opening harmonies with furious guitar / clarinet unisons. Tesla’s penchant for humor is evident throughout A Man’s Relationship With His Fragile Area, from the cartoonish march that opens “The Sweetest Horn” to the title track, where Tesla’s guitar ghosts the speech cadences of a very enthusiastic-sounding Indonesian lady. This is tremendously strong, very distinctive music.”
– From All About Jazz
Music and Composed by Tesla Manaf
Executive Producer by Riki Awani & Leonardo Pavkovic
Produced by Tesla Manaf
Mixing and Mastering by Ari Renaldi
Tesla Manaf: Guitar
Rudy Zulkarnaen: Double Bass
Desal Sembada: Drums
Hulhul: Clarinet, Tarompet Pencak & Indonesian Flute
“As riveting as it is exciting, a musical exploration worthy of multiple plays. Tesla shows his prowess in this album”
- A MAN’S RELATIONSHIP WITH HIS FRAGILE AREA
- COUNTING MILES AND SMILES
- MOVING SIDE
- EARLY YEARS
- MULTIPLY BY 0
- CHIN UP
- THE SWEETEST HORN
Includes: MP3 320kbps download.