Rodrigo Y Gabriela, Ondara
Tuesday June 20, 2023 07:30 PM EDT
CRITIC’S PICK: Most instrumental acoustic guitar outfits wouldn’t even consider covering Mozart, Metallica and Pink Floyd, but there aren’t many other guitar duos that approach the dizzying talents of Rodrigo y Gabriela. This Mexican twosome has been pushing boundaries since 2004’s debut, but have become even more aggressive and progressive on their new album In Between Thoughts … A New World, their first studio release in four years. A full orchestra and electronics are incorporated into the couple’s furious strumming on their stunning new effort — the prospect of hearing it performed live is even more alluring. Folk singer Ondara’s warm vocals and socio-political songs complete this terrific bill. — Hal Horowitz
From the venue:Grammy Award winning duo Rodrigo y Gabriela grew up on an eclectic mix of classic rock, heavy metal and flamenco, a rare alchemy of influences that still informs their work today. Not long after the dissolution of their first band, the two musicians set off with their acoustic guitars and ended up in Ireland, where they soon ran out of money and began busking on Dublin’s Grafton Street - a turn of events that led to their crossing paths with Irish singer/songwriter Damien Rice, who then asked them to open for him at an early headline show. As they developed their distinct breed of guitar music, Rodrigo y Gabriela quickly gained recognition for their extraordinary live show and made their full-length debut with 2002’s re-Foc. Along with turning out 8 additional acclaimed and kaleidoscopic albums over the years: including Area 52 (a 2012 effort made with a Cuban orchestra), 9 Dead Alive (a 2014 release that spotlighted their more rock-leaning sensibilities) and the 2020 Grammy winning Best Contemporary Instrumental Album, Mettavolution, the duo has cemented their status as a globally renowned live act. Among their many successes: performing at The White House for the President and First Lady of Mexico at a 2010 event hosted by Barack Obama; headlining the Jazz World stage at Glastonbury; selling out major venues like the Hollywood Bowl, Red Rocks Amphitheatre, London’s Royal Albert Hall, Radio City Music Hall, and the Sydney Opera House; and performing to massive crowds in such far-flung cities as Tokyo and Paris. 2023 sees the release of their most ambitious project yet, the Advaita Vedanta inspired In Between Thoughts...A New World, which features their signature dual guitar attack augmented by a full orchestra, and a corresponding world tour.