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  • Writer's pictureZim Ahmadi

THROWBACK REVIEW: 'Dunia Batas' - Payung Teduh

Updated: Mar 26, 2019

Release Date: April 1, 2012 Genre: Folk / Acoustic / Jazz My introduction to Payung Teduh was a live performance of their song 'Resah' on YouTube. I quickly fell in love. Lead singer, Is's , vocals, Ivan's guitarleles, the density of Cumi's contra bass. It was keroncong pleasantly lost in the smoky surroundings of a jazz bar. Payung Teduh was my gateway into more contemporary Indonesian music (especially folk). There were talks of this new romantic wave of sound that keeps popping up there and again that I've always missed because I was too busy obsessing over Sheila On 7, Peterpan or even the unashamedly pop ones like Samson. After listening to PT's debut, I vowed never to miss this wave again.

Dunia Batas has a clear theme, the guitarleles stand out so starkly as a motif throughout every track. But every repetition feels nuanced; never feeling tired or falling into monotony. Like in "Untuk Perempuan Yang Sedang di Pelukan"), just as you're preparing to snuggle up into a thick duvet of warm poetry ("Tak terasa gelap pun jatuh"), the song gives you the musical equivalent of hot chocolate, with the right amount of strings as biscuits. You can almost feel dusk in the trumpets of "Menuju Senja".

Payung Teduh is still around, and still making good music even with Is having left the band to form Pusakata (good music here refers to the song they made for Wreck It Ralph 2 "Sebuah Lagu", featuring the vocals of Marsya Dittia, their manager!). But it's always fun to remember that when Payung Teduh released Dunia Batas, there was a decent amount of anxiety about how the masses will ever accept a music that was essentially old keroncong in a world filled with electronic productions or rock bands.

Now, Payung Teduh has become quite popular in Malaysia among people in tune with Indonesian music (and even those who aren't), thanks to their friendship with Noh Salleh. (Fun fact: Both Dunia Batas and Noh Salleh's solo album was produced by prominent Indonesian artiste, Mondo Gascaro). All of this through an album that's not overtly experimental or groundbreaking; just a wonderful collection of songs that remind you how beautiful life can be when you have the right people singing about it.

Sometimes when I listen to this album, I can still hear the sound of an entire crowd singing "Menuju Senja" in that concert hall, shouting "Harum mawar di taman, menusuk hingga ke dalam sukma" as though every single member of the crowd was falling in love. God bless the bands that still have the power to do that.

FAV TRACK: Untuk Perempuan Yang Sedang Di Pelukan WORST TRACK: Biarkan RATING: 4.8 / 5

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