Rodrigo y Gabriela
It’s been 5 years since Rodrigo y Gabriela have put out new music and they have not backed off of their signature, masterful dual acoustic craft one bit. Between touring and working on the music that would become Mettavolution, they have stayed on top of their game and continued to hone it to a razors edge. The albums 6 new compositions, and one daring cover, is the perfect vehicle for Rodrigo and Gabriela to remind everyone why they sell out locations like the Hollywood Bowl, Red Rocks, and Royal Albert Hall, as well as venues around the globe.
The video for “Mettavolution” on their Facebook page, has a statement that really describes their mindset on this new album. “Metta means getting outside of that part of ourselves that strives for perfection and recognition. It’s something that you practice like an instrument to become a better citizen, in a more evolved place.” These 7 tracks are a musical reflection of that desire to become better human beings and explore various sonic themes to help achieve that goal.
The album has a wide berth of styles and unique musical accents from the funky R&B roots in “Mettavolution” to the subtle blues slide in “Terracentric” . “Cumbre” has a more familiar upbeat Latin dance vibe, while “Electric Soul”, with great Latin percussion accents, slows the album down, a touch, before vamping back up for “Krotona Days” and “Witness Tree”. Their cover of Pink Floyd’s “Echos” retains many of the original signature pieces while introducing their own heartfelt touches to the classic and I have to believe that Rodrigo and Gabriela were aware of the Rodger Waters fitting and oft quoted statement that “Echoes” describes “The potential that human beings have for recognizing each other’s humanity and responding to it, with empathy rather than antipathy.”
It’s worth noting that Rodrigo and Gabriela are 2 of the most precise and clean playing instrumentalist creating music today and their immense skills are apparent on every piece of music. Along with the Yamaha guitar-slinging duo, the album features producer Dave Sardy, who adds volumes of backdrop in synthesizer sounds, bass, and multiple percussive instruments, and Claudia Sarne on piano for “Electric Soul”. While I think that the piano should have been used more on that particular song, the entire album is beautifully composed and each song lends its sentiment to the next successive track.
If you’ve liked their previous work, this will be a great addition to their catalog and seems to be a spark of new exciting music.