By Alma Reed
Written by Wes Lytz
Internationally acclaimed guitar duo Rodrigo y Gabriela blew the roof off of Nashville’s Ryman Auditorium Sunday night. They are touring on their recently released Mettavolution album. T’was awesome. Here’s what you missed:
Background: Rodrigo y Gabriela is an acoustic guitar duo hailing from Mexico City. Entirely instrumental, their music combines elements of flamenco, rock and heavy metal into an explosive exhibition of harmonious excellence. Gabriela Quintero provides the pulse, applying fast-strumming flamenco guitar techniques to rock and heavy metal influenced chord progressions. Atop this sturdy foundation, Rodrigo Sanchez drop-ships the melody from the muse to your soul, employing fiery leads and an abundance of glorious acoustic guitar shredding. In short, Rod y Gab is acoustic metal at its zenith.
Mettavolution is Rodrigo y Gabriella’s latest album. The first half of the album is comprised of six new RyG compositions. The second half is an audacious 19 minute cover of the Pink Floyd song “Echoes”. RyG performed all 7 songs from their latest album. They also played some old faves from older albums such as Hanuman, 11:11, and a medley devised from several songs on their self-titled second album, including snippets of Led Zeppelin’s “Stairway” and Metallica’s “Orion”. Between songs, either Rodrigo or Gabriela would engage the audience with uplifting and humorous stories about sources of artistic inspiration and reflections on their life, career and even personal bouts with anxiety.
The performance is phenomenal. A tour-de-force from start to finish, Rodrigo and Gabriela feed off each other’s energy like two batteries charging each other. The net effect is a musical vortex that inhales the audience like a black hole. You could grab ahold of your seat and try not to get sucked in, but where’s the fun in that?