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Rodrigo Y Gabriela to release new album in 2012

Rodrigo Y Gabriela

Story by Jack Foley

MEXICAN acoustic rock duo Rodrigo y Gabriela will release their new album on January 23, 2012.

Entitled Area 52, the album is their first recorded collaboration with another group of musicians; a 13-piece Cuban orchestra composed of some of Havana’s finest young players, collectively known as the C.U.B.A.

The album has been produced by Peter Asher, known for his work with James Taylor, Bonnie Raitt, 10,000 Maniacs and Diana Ross; as well as being A&R at Apple Records.

It was co-produced by Rodrigo and has been mixed by Rafa Sardina, 25 times nominated (and 11 times winner) at the Latin Grammys.

On Area 52 Rodrigo y Gabriela revisit nine of their compositions and reinterpret them in a new and dramatic fashion, as they have never been heard before.

The new arrangements are by Switzerland based composer/arranger/pianist Alex Wilson, best known for his work with Courtney Pine and Ernest Ranglin.

Recording took place during the summer at Abdala Studios in Havana and later at Rod & Gab’s studio in Ixtapa, Mexico.

Guests on the album include Anoushka Shankar on sitar, rock drummer John Tempesta (The Cult, White Zombie, Testament) on two tracks, jazz bass player Carles Benavent (Miles Davis, Chick Corea) on two tracks and Palestinian group Le Trio Joubran.

According to Rodrigo, the album is called Area 52 because: “We felt like Mulder and Scully approaching this; it was just a crazy idea, to see if a big Cuban band could play our music, a step in the dark.”

He adds: “We knew it was out there, everyone has heard of Area 51, but we wanted to take it a little further.”

Area 52 will be released on Rubyworks on January 23, 2012.