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LISTEN: Indonesian Thoughts In Post-Snowman Project
Luke Turner , August 17th, 2011 07:39

New music from Andy Citawarman

One of the Quietus' favourite albums of 2011 is Absence by now-defunct multinational tribalists Snowman. We're pleased though to be able to tell you of new music from band member Andy Citawarman. He's adopting a more ambient approach for his new material, and has passed on a song called 'Tanah Tumpah Darah' for us to present to you. We've chosen to put it up today as it's the 66th 'birthday' of Indonesia. 'Tanah Tumpah Darah' means "the land where blood spills or land of the struggle." Listen to the track and read an interview with Andy below that.

Andy Citawarman - Tanah Tumpah Darah (Demo) by citarum

What has been your musical approach following Snowman?

Andy Citawarman: My approach post-Snowman has been doing what I know best, which are melodies, harmonies and ambience. There isn't any singing on 'Tanah Tumpah Darah' but ambient vocals (similar to Grouper, Julianna Barwick, Cornellius) do appear on most of the tracks I've worked on. Also there are no "rhythms" on Tanah...but I've used my Japanese style wooden table, pots and pans (literally), hand claps, even beat boxing as "percussions" for quite a few tracks as well. The new songs have plenty influences from ambient artists such as Tim Hecker, Grouper or Fennesz, but also electronic/dance such as Aphex Twin and tribal (chants and beats) which I was comfortable doing with Snowman.

It's a lot more ambient in feel, why is that? Are we seeing Andy Citawarman without the percussion of others?

AC: Well as mentioned above I actually played a lot of "percussions" on the new songs. But yeah having someone like Ross would have been much preferred :) I realised that from personal experience I listen to more artists such as Clark, Gold Panda or even My Disco when being compared to Tim Hecker or Grouper probably due to the presence of "beats / percussion". So you are correct in saying that there NO percussion from others but there are lots of percussions in other songs for a bit of variety, where I recorded/played the percussions myself. Not sure how I'm going to do the songs live yet though...

Why the decision to mark Indonesia's 66th birthday with the track?

AC: I was born in Indonesia so although I haven't lived there for more than half of my life it still has a very special place within me. During the recent London riots I received a lot of messages and phone calls from relatives and friends checking in how I was, which comforted me during the chaos. Similar sorts of riots happen over there quite regularly as apparently Indonesia is the second most corrupt country in Asia. So 'Tanah Tumpah Darah' which is taken from the National Anthem 'Indonesia Raya' translates to "where our (Indonesian People) blood spills" or "the land of the struggle" and to me is a strong reminder to me of the issues people face nowadays everywhere around the world. Snowman wrote a song called 'We Are the Plague' once... that seems about right to me. In saying that the song was not meant to be aggressive - it's about remembrance... kind of like an "ode" to the common people's struggle to exist.