Tuesday, September 18, 2007


In the annotation to Tibetan chants and Central African folk songs I said that this music appeals to a certain kind of aesthetic perception. It is interesting for the same qualities that make a lot of modern electronic music interesting, as well as stuff like Faust, Riley, et cetera: not as a pop song, but as a richly textured sound painting.
The same applies to indonesian gamelan music (1, 2): if Gbaya is proto-minimal techno, then gamelan is proto-ambient.
Unfortunately, I don't like ambient, and I did not become a gamelan fan. This is a case when "giving it a chance" did not quite work. Maybe I just don't have the right kind of aesthetic perception. Still, it's interesting, and the links are below.

Java Sunda Country - The Art of the Gamelan Degung
zippyshare or uloz.to
1. Catrik
2. Sangku ratu
3. Lalayaran
4. Renggong buyut
5. Pajajaran
6. Jipang Lontang, Beber Layar
7. Lengser Midang
8. Purbasaka
9. Jipang Parwa
10. Maya Selas
11. Ujung Laut
12. Karang ulun

This is the one recorded in 1972 at the court performance. You can hear the birds chirping. Read about it at wiki.
Javanese Court Gamelan
zippyshare or uloz.to
1. Ketawang Puspawarna – 4:46
2. Gending Tejanata / Ladrang Sembawa / Ladrang Playon – 18:28
3. Gending Mandulpati / Ladrang Agun-Agun – 19:40
4. Bubaran Hudan Mas – 2:07

Suara Parahiangan - Degung Sabilulungan
This is more modern-sounding, ethno-pop-like.
zippyshare or uloz.to
1. Sabilulungan (5.35)
2. Karedok Leunca (5.57)
3. Colenak (6.21)
4. Dikantun Tugas (6.05)
5. Ayun Ambing (5.35)
6. Ngantosan (6.18)
7. Karatagan Pahlawan (6.17)
8. B A N D U N G (5.45)
9. Karatagan Pemuda Indonesia (5.45)
10. Mojang Desa (5.37)

Lestari - The Hood Collection. Early Field Recordings From Java
zippyshare or uloz.to
01. Lagon Tlutur (slendro pathet manyura)
02. Ladrang Asmarandana (slendro pathet manyura)
03. Jineman Uler Kambang (slendro pathet sanga)
04. Ketawang Tarupala (slendro pathet manyura)
05. Budak Ceurik
06. Ketawang Langen Gita Srinarendra (pelog pathet barang)
07. Kidung
08. Ladrang Kandamanyura (slendro pathet manyura)
09. Bandjaran
10. Gendhing Rambu (pelog pathet lima)


  1. Hi, whats the trick to getting Java Sunda Country on the Russian link ?

  2. Many thanks for that.

  3. Hi

    I am familiar with the ifolder routine but cannot find the proper link to get me going. it's usually a short word underlined near the bottom of the page.

    meanwhile, shame about your impressions of Gamelan as it is a rich and varied field of music. while there's often an 'ambience' to the recordings as they are usually done outside i'd hardly refer to it as ambient as there is far more going on. Check out the balinese keybar style, the drum and bass equivalent of Gamelan for something different.

  4. ok, so moments later I find the ifolder link I was looking for. for all others you'll see a a series of bold letters w/ red arrow to the right. click on that arrow and follow the rest of the instructions.

    It should be noted that the gamelan posts you have offered are of 2 different regions of Java which tend towards being rather slow in tempo and gentle in feel, thus 'ambient'-like.

    here are some links for Balinese Gamelan, all c/o the wonderful A Closet Of Curiosities blog. This is a whole other angle on Gamelan.

    Gamelan GongSekar Anjar and Gendèr Wajang - The Exotic Sounds of Bali

    Bali: The Celebrated Gamelans

    Dancers of Bali Gamelan Orchestra - Dancers of Bali Gamelan Orchestra

    Finally, thank you. I just discovered your wonderful blog, also rich and varied.

  5. Thank you very much for posting the Suara Parahiangan record. Great post.

    Greetings from Nenest

  6. thanks for all this gamelan stuff!!!

  7. Hello the Java Sunda Country - The Art of the Gamelan Degung seems to be dead. Thank you.

  8. Could you please put online again the album
    java Sunda Country - The Art of the Gamelan Degung
    i think this one is supposed to be a second record from a series of two. I know the first one which is amazing
    thanks !

  9. Reups here too?