Rodrigo y Gabriela – Day of the Dead Festival, October 31st 2012

Rodrigo y Gabriela – Day of the Dead Festival, October 31st 2012

You would think that Halloween is the only cool thing at the end of October right? Well, if you’re tired of the awful costumes and accidentally giving cocaine to the lovely trick-or-treat kids at your front door, then you should try the Mexican holiday Día de los Muertos; the Day of the Dead.
That was exactly the idea that the organizers (Wahaca, NOMAD and the Embassy of Mexico) of the Day of the Dead festival in London had. Their main attraction were the lovely duo Rodrigo y Gabriela.
The Day of the Dead festival was held in the gorgeous, yet humid Old Vic Tunnels near Waterloo station in central London. Not a great place if you have claustrophobia really…

The Old Vic Tunnels were grim and gloomy decorated, offering an atmosphere that you’ll expect with the Day of the Dead. Being confronted with images of the dead and candles in first few rooms, I wondered how long it would take me before I would feel uncomfortable. To be clear; I’m not claustrophobic nor scared of the dead. I just knew that there was something waiting for me…

And yes, I was right. It didn’t take too long before I got uncomfortable, as I encountered one of my biggest fears in the next room; 40-year old men in dark blue suits with face-paint. And of course a beer in their left and nachos in their right hand, while talking about the sales of the day and the ‘pretty young birds’ at the festival. Oh, and complaining about the lack of network reception in the tunnels! Guys, it’s a tunnel, under the ground. What did you expect?

Luckily, a five piece band covered in traditional Mexican face-paint started playing. I had to search for the name of the band on the stage, and found it on the keyboard; Vadoinmessico.
This international 5-piece, residing from London, make ‘nostalgic psychedelic freak-folk’.
But, it wasn’t freak; it was damn good!
Have a listen to their track Archaeology of the Future below and (maybe) fall in love!

The crowd disappeared into different rooms in the venue right after Vadoinmessico’s set ended. After queuing for a bottle of water (yes, water), I ended up staring at a skull for a while, a dead-end and a donkey (or horse, maybe even a zebra) made of little figurines. Pretty cool. But it was time to head back in the crowd to see the main act of the evening, Rodrigo y Gabriela, in the big room.
This duo conquered the world in rapid pace with their brilliant and unique mix of metal, jazz and world music.
Metal, jazz and world music yes!
Their rhythmic mix of various genres make Rodrigo y Gabriela a pleasant band to listen to. And it didn’t take too long for the duo to win over the crowd.
As the room was completely packed, I noticed that a lot of the people came to the festival just to see Rodrigo y Gabriela play, and we’re they right!

Rodrigo y Gabriela divide the tracks into one of them playing the rhythm sections, including tapping on the guitar body to create a drum sound; and the other playing the quick and catchy melodic sections.
It is not a big surprise that Rodrigo y Gabriella are this popular; their sound that makes you want to move your feet, let your head follow the rhythm and hum along with the sweet melodies.
As I’m not that familiar with the tracks, I didn’t cheer loud of recognizing a track, unlike the majority of the crowd.

I found myself a not-too-crowded spot, far away from the annoying business men to enjoy the brilliant music with a bottle of water and nachos. And to see the men ruining their suits by leaning against the moist walls. What a pleasure!

Rodrigo y Gabriela are back later this month for the following dates:
Sunday 25th November – HMV Institute, Birmingham
Monday 26th November – Academy, Manchester
Tuesday 27th November – Colston Hall, Bristol
Thursday 29th November – The Forum, Kentish Town, London

For more information, and to order tickets, head over to Rodrigo y Gabriela’s website!



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Timothy FSM 621 posts

Converted to dEUS-ism in 2001. Keen on screaming Friday Friday Friday once a week on Twitter. Might convince you not to talk about U2.

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