Area 52

  • Record Label: ATO
  • Release Date: Jan 24, 2012
Metascore
73

Generally favorable reviews - based on 19 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 10 out of 19
  2. Negative: 0 out of 19
Buy On
  1. Entertainment Weekly
    Jan 20, 2012
    83
    Call it Buena Vista Shredding Club. [27 Jan 2012, p.71]
  2. Q Magazine
    Feb 22, 2012
    80
    Groundbreaking and mind-boggling. [Mar 2012, p.111]
  3. Feb 10, 2012
    80
    Area 52 is hands down the duo's most grandiose, outlandish opus yet.
  4. Jan 23, 2012
    80
    This album expands the very definition of musical collaboration.
  5. A seething, soundtracky, high-gloss, high-energy orchestral Latin "fusion", full of licks and stabs and twiddly bits.
  6. Jan 20, 2012
    80
    A classy, varied and upbeat set.
  7. Jan 25, 2012
    76
    The charm of the band's guitar work sometimes gets lost in the middle of C.U.B.A.'s added instrumentation.
  8. It's an enjoyable album, and the playing is astoundingly good.
  9. Feb 7, 2012
    70
    Here they are in sonic competition with a dense mix of world-class musicians, making the overall result great, but washing out the instrumental singularity that they are known for.
  10. 70
    As an Afro-Cuban record, it's solid.
User Score
8.7

Universal acclaim- based on 6 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 1 out of 1
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 1
  3. Negative: 0 out of 1
  1. Feb 10, 2013
    10
    I found this album on an airplane, of all places. I have a love of big, brassy Latin jazz ensemble work, so this seemed intriguing, evenI found this album on an airplane, of all places. I have a love of big, brassy Latin jazz ensemble work, so this seemed intriguing, even though I had no previous exposure to Rodrigo y Gabriela or C.U.B.A. I don't quite know how to describe the album, but I know that it works. The guitar work is virtuosic at times (Gabriela, I assume), but the brass band adds something to the mix that makes the whole greater than the sum of the parts. It is like melding two very different, albeit Latin, worlds. Because I did not listen to this album knowing what Rodrigo y Gabriela sounded like on their own, so I assumed, actually, that the two groups always recorded together. I guess that is a compliment, as they sound like they belong together to me. Full Review »