CD Music of Indonesia, Vol. 4: Music of Nias & North Sumatra (CD 600545),
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Music of Indonesia, Vol. 4: Music of Nias & North Sumatra

  • 1. Simalungun Rayat
    2. Gula Tualah
    3. Hoho Sisambua'a Matona
    4. Hoho Si Tolu Fanema
    5. Hoho Ninawuago
    6. Hoho Si Tolu Nawua / Hoho Maluaya Si'oligo
    7. Gongdang Haro-Haro
    8. Gondang Parsahadatan Tu Saluhut Sahala Habonaran
    9. Gondang Malim
    10. Gondang Si Monang-Monang
    11. Gondang Panogu-Nogu Horbo Tu Lahatan
    12. Gondang Arang-Arang Dairi
    13. Gondang Si Bunga Jambu
    14. Gondang Parumbak-Umbak Ni Alogo Bolon
    15. Pinasa Si Dung-Dungon
    16. Si Tapi Tola
  • Additional Info
    Manufacturer Part Number (MPN): 40420

  • Credits

    Fill title: Music Of Indonesia 4: Music Of Nias & North Sumatra - Hoho, Gendang Karo, Gondang Toba.
    Recorded in Sumatra and Nias from 1990 to 1991.
    This volume samples the music of three ethnic groups, the mostly Muslim Karo and the Christian/animist Toba, both from North Sumatra, and the Ono Niha (or Hoho) of Nias. Sumatra is the world's fourth largest island, and Nias is a much smaller island 90 miles away. This is rare music from remote places where traditional religious beliefs and rituals are still in active conflict with world religions, especially Christianity.
    The Karo and Toba favor instrumental over vocal music and have large "outdoor" and smaller "indoor" ensembles. In the Karo selections, the double reed sarune warbles over light click and tok percussion, while occasional hits on hanging gongs mark unvarying cycles. One song features a pretty vocal pop melody almost like an English ballad. The Toba selections, which are considerably wilder, make up ten of the volume's 16 tracks and include music from possession rituals that Christians cannot attend. The Toba's all-male gondang ensembles include tuned percussion, drums, flute, string instruments, and clackers, as well as the sarune, which often dominates with its wailing melodies. The rhythms here can really swing at times, and the melodies are alluring and memorable, even when frenetic. The result at its best is downright exhilarating. In addition to the possession music, there are war songs, calmer narrative pieces, and music to accompany the sacrifice of a water buffalo.
    In sharp contrast, the Ono Hiha of Nias perform choral music with no instruments at all. Sung poetry has a central place in life here, and the male choruses heard on this volume perform music typically sung at multi-day wakes. The chorus leader guides the singers through ritualistic songs which build march-like rhythmic force and feature unusual vocal wavers. The dance piece concluding the Nias selections is marked by strong rhythm and clashing dissonance. ~ Banning Eyre

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