Padang Moonrise is the story of modern Indonesian music that emerged underneath the volcanoes of Java and Sumatra. Java, the most populous island in the archipelago of over 17,000 islands and 1300 distinct ethnic groups, and its capital city Jakarta, was where most of the post-colonial national identity, politics, administration and music production was centred.
Traditional songs from Java, Sumatra, Bali and beyond were re-imagined by a small group of state-sponsored musicians that also composed and arranged new music. These songs aimed at consolidating a geographically disparate country with a new language and new ideas of national character. This compilation brings together a handful of these recordings that combine elements of regional popular music, Islamic Gambus, Javanese & Balinese Gamelan and Kroncong, with jazz, Afro-Latin music & instrumentation, and vocal harmonies influenced by banned American doo-wop and rock & roll. The results are a unique blend of styles that have remained mostly insulated from the world outside of Indonesia until a recent worldwide resurgence in the interest of recorded music of all forms has shone a new light on these nearly forgotten recordings.