by / October 4th, 2009 /

Rodrigo y Gabriela – 11:11

 3/5 Rating

(Rubyworks)

The Mexican musical duo who specialize in playing fast, rhythmic classical guitars are back. Formerly Ireland’s own Latino combo they have moved back to Mexico but return with more of their flamenco Spanish guitar power chords and outstanding soloing. Perhaps no surprises to those who have heard (or seen) their earlier work is that there is a metal edge to their sound (especially the climbing lead on -Logos’). This is one downfall of the album as a whole – you can’t help but think they are all intro’s to a heavy metal songs. It is also no surprise that Alex Skolnick (of Testament) guests on the album (-Atman’).

But the rock out never fully comes as they pursue their eclectic tastes and experience. It is no coincidence, given the name, that the track ‘Buster Voodoo’ has aspects of Hendrix’s Voodoo Chile to it. Indeed all the tracks have been -inspired’ by someone from Pink Floyd (-11:11′) to Al Di Meola (-Logos’). Their heavy metal influence however can be most felt on the tracks dedicated to Dimeball Darrell (-Chac Mool’) and Carlos Santana (-Hanuman’), the latter even having a real upbeat swing about it. ‘Savitri’ sees Rodrigo lightly skipping over the neck of his guitar in majestic fashion, while -Master Maqui’ pays tribute to and also features Strunz & Farah, the Iranian duo who have been blending guitar styles for over three decades now.

The accompanying DVD, while a nice bonus, is a bit simplistic in its interview, as Rodrigo and Gabriela talk about their success and about living back at home in Mexico. It is amusing to note that they haven’t lost their Dublin lingo (‘we were fookin’ stressed’ as Gabriela so eloquently observes). Also included is a tour of their glorious, if understated, studio. For budding guitarists the DVD features a detailed 20 minute instruction on how to play -Buster Voodoo’. Overall more of the same, but well worth tracking down for the fan.

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  • Rodrigo Y Gabriel are a breath of fresh air. As a classical guitarist, I love what these guys have done. I am looking forward to checking out their new album.