In the arcana of classical music, no pop artist can be counted on to provide an adaptation quite like Rodrigo y Gabriela. The iconic Mexican acoustic guitar duo have been blowing the minds of their audiences for more than 20 years at this point, but that hasn’t diminished their ability to transform a piece of music in shocking and delightful ways. Genre hardly seems to matter; when Rodrigo y Gabriela pick up their guitars the results are simply magical. And that’s certainly true of their new adaptation of Mozart’s Symphony No. 25 in G minor, which the band unveiled today. You can listen to the scintillating performance below.
Rodrigo y Gabriela’s percussive style has often seen the group performing covers of rock or heavy metal music, but it can be adapted just as easily to classical masterpieces hundreds of years old. Mozart’s 25th symphony, completed when he was merely 17 years old in Oct. 1773, is one of his more instantly recognizable works, especially to fans of Miloš Forman’s classic 1984 film Amadeus. In that stylized telling of Mozart’s life, this piece of music plays over the opening sequences, where it left a heavy impression on Rodrigo Sánchez. As he wrote, of the decision to cover the symphony’s first movement:
“This piece of art has been with me since I saw the trailer for the Milos Forman film, Amadeus. I was probably 10 or so, and I loved it forever. The film is one of my favorite films ever, but that piece had something very special and stuck with me. Last year while we were on hold, I started messing with it and started to record. I don’t read music, so I listened to many different versions played by the best orchestras in the world and picked by ear each line from the oboes to the cellos to the violins and started putting together the arrangement for 7 guitars. So, I recorded my lines and worked on Gab’s lines, I didn’t think she’d be interested in putting this out as Rodrigo y Gabriela. Once she saw her lines and recorded them, she was well up for it! We love the result because we had to use different tunings for some of these lines but it worked!”
Oh, it worked alright. Check out the newly released recording below, and check Rodrigo y Gabriela’s most recent tour dates here.