Artists | Issues | CD Reviews | Interviews | Concert Reviews | DVD/Video Reviews | Book Reviews | Who We Are | Staff | Home


Tribal Dance

Review by Gary Hill

You really can’t go wrong with Tohpati. His version of fusion meets guitar rock is always compelling. This disc continues that tradition. On this set Jimmy Haslip provides the bass while Chad Wackerman handles the drums. As always, Tohpati himself shines on guitar. It’s versatile and dynamic music that always manages to entertain.

This review is available in book format (hardcover and paperback) in Music Street Journal: 2014  Volume 3 at

Track by Track Review

There’s an odd little introductory section here. That gives way to some killer fusion that’s part hard rock and part jazz. It has elements of King Crimson like sound built into it. It has good contrast between mellower and more rocking music. This gets quite noisy and intense at times. It’s a real screamer in later sections.

Spirit of Java
This is pretty amazing stuff. Parts of it are stripped back and rhythmic. Then there are loud, but still fairly sparse melodic sections that lean towards metallic crunch. Other melodic movements are more filled out, but mellower, lacking that crunch. Then, after the two minute mark, they bring the funk and move this thing forward in some great ways. It moves into more hard rocking motifs later. It even gets a bit of space rock and heavy metal in the mix as that works through.
Tribal Dance
Fusion and rock are combined on this diverse number. I love some of the mellow jazzy sections on this thing. That said, when it really rocks out, it’s stellar, too. This has some great shifts and turns and is one of the cooler pieces here.
Red Mask
Although this is by no means a straight forward tune, this in some ways much more of a mainstream rock number. It’s still got plenty of changes, but the hooks are more classic rock based and the whole thing just has more hooks to grab the listener. I’m reminded at times of something like Joe Satriani.
This short piece is mellow, melodic and nice. It’s pretty and has a great flowing groove to it.
Alternating between more powered up and energized and mellower sounds, this is a fairly straightforward melodic fusion number.
A frantic and rather crazed fusion jam, this includes a drum solo in the midst of it. It’s really a killer tune. In fact, it might be the best piece on show here.
Midnight Rain
Melodic guitar dominated music is the order of business here. This feels like Joe Satriani to me. It’s pretty straightforward and mainstream.


Return to the
Tohpati Artist Page
Artists Directory

   Creative Commons License
   This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 United States License.

    © 2024 Music Street Journal                                                                           Site design and programming by Studio Fyra, Inc./