1. Dragons Layer

From the recording Dragons Layer

“Dragons Layer” is a fantastical creation, guiding listeners on a journey through a sonic landscape of suspenseful intrigue. As the title suggests, the Dragon Layer stacked with fearless harmony — the angular composition twists through chordal movements as themes develop in ripples and waves. Written and arranged by Ari Joshua, Dragons Layer has been described as: ‘cinematic, grunge, classical’. Joshua’s guitar crunch is joined by the wizardry of Billy Martin on the drums, the astonishing John Medeski on keyboard, and the shapeshifting upright bass of Jason Fraticelli (Cyro Baptista, Matisyahu). As the song brings the journey home, cascading melodies flutter, dissipate and fade away into the realms of imagination.

Artwork by Martin Ontiveros captures the playful spirit of the piece, at once both comedy and adventure. Dragon Layer was recorded in an old barn on a farm near Woodstock, New York, as part of a multi-day recording session in April 2022.

“Imperfections can lead us in giant steps toward what's real, some times that’s what makes an artist's greatest art. John and Billy are the masters of being vulnerable and just stepping out into the unknown, and I composed Dragon Layer with them in mind. I listened to a bunch of early John Zorn, MMW, and Marc Ribot, mixed that with a bit of Amon Tobin vibes, and then that feeling of winding up this little jack in the box musical toy I have in my studio. The Dragon can have different meanings to different people at different times, I’d rather just leave it open, but this song is really something that just came out in a single sitting."

Extra information & credits:

Musical Style:
Grunge, Cinematic, Classical, Jazz, Storytelling

Music Influences:
Medeski Martin & Wood, John Zorn, Frank Zappa, Marc Ribot, Charles Ives

Release Description:
Ari Joshua is stepping out in a collaboration with jazz legends Billy Martin and John Medeski of MMW. “Dragons Layer” was recorded as part of a multi-day recording session in a barn in Woodstock, NY just after the end of the global pandemic. Written specifically with John Medeski and Billy Martin in Mind, Dragons Layer has been described as: ‘cinematic, grunge, classical’.

Produced by Ari Joshua

Ari Joshua - Guitar (Electric)
John Medeski - Electric Organ
Billy Martin - Drums
Jason Fraticelli - Upright Bass

Engineered by Chris Bittner
Applehead Recording
Mixed by Matt Rifino, Magic Matt Mixing
Eric Eagle Score Studio
Mastered by Ed Brooks, Resonant Mastering