Artist: Gesang, Nuning, Waldjinah
Album: Bengawan Solo
Publisher: JVC Record
Recording Technology: –
About this album:
According to Wikipedia, Kroncong is the name of a ukulele-type instrument and an Indonesian musical style that typically makes use of the Kroncong, a flute, and a female singer. And this album is an audiophile-grade Kroncong!
All the singers (Gesang, Nuning, and Waldjinah) are famous Kroncong singer in Indonesia. Gesang, though quite old, still has enough breathe to give emotional touch on this album. I think this is his last “best” Kroncong album recorded. Nuning (and especially) Waldjinah are well known as two famous female Kroncong singer. We could find a lot of their albums in local, but none in audiophile-grade like this album.
This album was recorded on JVC Victor Studio, Tokyo on April 1994 and remastered on April 2000, also on the same place. Again, I would like to highlight (again!) the quality of this album. This is one of the rarely superb recorded Kroncong album.
All of the songs are very famous and popular. Maybe not for teenagers, but for your father/mother or grandfather/mother. Some of the famous tracks are “Bengawan Solo”, “Jembatan Merah”, “Walang Kekek”, and “Kroncong Moritsuko”. The instruments are very natural, soft, and also details. Musicality is superb. Vocal is deadly locked on the center, combined with instruments around.
At first track, Nuning will impress you with “Kroncong Moritsuko”. Don’t underestimate this Krocong style, because this kind of music contains a lot of combination from low to high frequency. The low instrument plays between 30-150 Hz with soft but deep power, while the high frequency may reach 10 kHz with active harmonics up to 20 kHz. With good filter, this album could maintain high frequency up to 20 kHz with no sharp roll-off before it.
Next, Waldjinah combined with Nuning perform very well on famous “Kroncong Kemayoran”. This track is faster than before. You can use it to test the tightness and speed of your low frequency drivers. Pay attention that Kroncong is not an easy kind of music to be reproduced in most system due to complex traditional instruments inside.
We jump to track #5 with song “Bengawan Solo”. Gesang also performs very well on the first half of this track, while Waldjinah continues on the second half. This is a classic and very famous song in Indonesia. This song was created on 1940 on the riverside of Bengawan Solo. Gesang was fishing and dazed, forecasting the flow of Bengawan Solo river, far away to the sea.
And finally, we jump to track #10, again with Gesang and famous “Jembatan Merah”. Gesang still shows his magic at his age, although we can hear his short breathe. With good control, he could maintain his breathe to give his best performance.
I can’t say more. This is an absolutely recommended album for an audiophile who loves Kroncong also. This album is so expensive, hardly to find. Perhaps as difficult as finding Three Blind Mice recording.
Sound Quality: 5 of 5 Stars
Song Popularity/Arrangement (subjective): 4.75 of 5 Stars
Recommendation: 5 of 5 stars.
01. Kroncong Moritsuko
02. Kroncong Kemayoran
03. Stambul Bunga Mawar
04. Bunga Anggrek
05. Bengawan Solo
06. Putri Solo
07. Yen Ing Tawang
08. Walang Kekek
09. Kalung Mutiara
10. Jembatan Merah
11. Bengawan Solo