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Omar Rodriguez-Lopez

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Omar Rodriguez-Lopez El Grupo Nuevo de Omar Rodriguez Lopez - Cryptomnesia album cover
3.21 | 47 ratings | 5 reviews | 34% 5 stars

Good, but non-essential

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Studio Album, released in 2009

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Tuberculoids (4:27)
2. Half Kleptos (3:09)
3. Cryptomnesia (6:02)
4. They're Coming to Get You, Barbara (4:08)
5. Puny Humans (2:31)
6. Shake Is for 8th Graders (2:12)
7. Noir (3:44)
8. Paper Cunts (2:51)
9. Elderly Pair Beaten with Hammer (2:03)
10. Warren Oates (4:55)
11. Fuck Your Mouth (0:23)

Total Time 36:25

Line-up / Musicians

- Omar Rodriguez Lopez / guitars, keyboards
- Zach Hill / drums
- Cedric Bixler Zavala / vocals
- Juan Alderete / bass
- Jonathan Hischke / synthesizer bass

Releases information

Recorded in 2006, vocals were added 2008.

Released on Rodriguez Lopez Productions.

Thanks to mrcozdude for the addition
and to proglucky for the last updates
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Buy OMAR RODRIGUEZ-LOPEZ El Grupo Nuevo de Omar Rodriguez Lopez - Cryptomnesia Music

OMAR RODRIGUEZ-LOPEZ El Grupo Nuevo de Omar Rodriguez Lopez - Cryptomnesia ratings distribution

(47 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(34%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(28%)
Good, but non-essential (17%)
Collectors/fans only (17%)
Poor. Only for completionists (4%)

OMAR RODRIGUEZ-LOPEZ El Grupo Nuevo de Omar Rodriguez Lopez - Cryptomnesia reviews

Showing all collaborators reviews and last reviews preview | Show all reviews/ratings

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by Epignosis
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
2 stars This is The Mars Volta B-team. Omar Rodriguez-Lopez, whom I consider to be the most creative guitarist of the decade, must reserve all of his best material for his main band (rightfully so, I believe), and just dump everything else he comes up with on a dozen solo albums throughout the year. Amusingly enough, many of these albums feature Cedric Bixler-Zavala as the "guest" lead vocalist. The rest of the lineup may change (or not), but the result is more or less subpar music from The Mars Volta (in this case, complete with gratuitous profanity). In this case, it's subpar music from The Mars Volta with an experimental edge and an electronic tinge. Rodriguez-Lopez said he completed the music for this album in under a week, and that it waited two years before the vocals were added- perhaps during that time he could have worked some coherence into the compositions. Hardcore fans may delight, but it shouldn't be surprising if even they don't rejoice. For a high-quality solo outing from Rodriguez-Lopez, I recommend Xenophanes without reservation.

"Tuberculoids" Predictably enough, the album starts with a variety of bizarre noises and creepy sounds. The band bursts in abruptly, with Bixler-Zavala singing almost immediately. The instrumentation and arrangement is one blurry mess. Worst of all, the vocal melody is not in tune with the "music" (a term I use loosely here)- not a good start at all.

"Half Kleptos" An improvement on the opening track, this at least has a coherent refrain, but the sound is still really off. Bixler-Zavala sings really low and doesn't sound right doing so.

"Cryptomnesia" This opens with electronic noises and a man speaking about being high on hashish and pretending to be a Muslim with a girl giggling at his tale (at least that's what I gathered). The music is frantic and noisy, again with a vocal melody that is a mismatch with the music.

"They're Coming to Get You, Barbara" Automatic electronic music is paired with weird, breathy noises before giving way to even more nonsensical, avant-garde twaddle.

"Puny Humans" Yet another bizarre excursion that is merely painful to listen to. Bixler-Zavala basically raps during the verses and sings "I won't get Tourette's if you won't get Tourette's." The final part of this song is his best performance on the album, however.

"Shake is for 8th Graders" After a brief interlude of someone talking, the previous track continues.

"Noir" This is more electronic noises and otherworldly breathing. The high-pitched singing is accompanied mainly by a chugging bass playing the same two notes. The second half is a cacophony from hell.

"Paper Cunts" Paper cunts? Really? While I'm certainly no fan of censorship or prudishness, the title of this piece doubles as both bad taste and a cringe-worthy pun. Unlike the title, the hectic music will be forgotten just as quickly as it is heard.

"Elderly Pair Beaten with Hammer" Here is another disharmonious piece with an inspiring title. It's loaded with insane, profanity-laced lyrics (perhaps Bixler-Zavala does have Tourette's) and chaotic music (again).

"Warren Oates" Here is another collection of noise, sounds and guitar thrown together haphazardly, with only the drums providing anything coherent.

"Fuck Your Mouth" This seems to be a pointlessly random excuse to use the title- the track itself consists of a man thanking folks for listening and then signing off.

Review by Kempokid
4 stars While I appreciate the relentlessly prolific nature of Omar Rodriguez Lopez during his solo career, essentially setting himself up as an artist who just loved to make music and release a ton of it to the world, I cannot deny that it led to a few points in his discography where there were just stretches of mediocrity and unsuccessful experiments. With that said, stuff like Cryptomnesia is what makes those less engaging parts feel all the more worth it, because this is such a bold, exciting album that feels so much more insane than most other things I've heard. Not only have you got the main duo of The Mars Volta, with Cedric being the vocalist here, but you've also got the relentless drumming talents of Zach Hill on top of it all to provide a far more frantic, chaotic energy than even anything Bedlam in Goliath could muster, turning the brutal prog influence of that album into the entire approach and aesthetic surrounding this one. Each song is essentially composed of noisy, bizarre guitar melodies with a wall of abrasive, brickwalled synths and impenetrable drum fills, with some vocals being buried within the mix, occasionally taking centre stage for those moments that want to further solidify the passionate performances on display and even somehow manage to be really fun and catchy on occasion. While it's definitely not a style that everyone can get behind, especially when all the most extreme elements of the genre come into play, feeling closer to a wall of incomprehensible noise as opposed to anything a bit more digestible and coherent, I personally adore it in general and think that Omar's take on the style is admirable with how far he's willing to go with it.

The way the tracklisting plays out here is also really neat, with Tuberculoids immediately setting a precedent by not even having a vocal melody that sticks anywhere close to the rest of the instrumentation most of the time. It feels surreal and disorienting, but works perfectly for being this instant wake up call about this album being A LOT. Following this up with Half Kleptos and the title track is also a very cool idea, bringing in a slightly more accessible take on the genre, especially with the really fun, groovy rhythms of Half Kleptos, before thrusting the listener into the deep end with the unmatched bombardment of intensity with the last few minutes of the title track. Past this point the album completely loses the plot, songs blending together in a mad flurry of drum bashes and whirring sounds with little to no differentiation from one track to the next, just the pure essence of the most uncompromising stuff that Omar has dabbled in for a solid 15 minutes, making the silence to follow this feel deafeningly quiet. Definitely not an album for everyone, but if you like your music to be absolutely off the wall and relentless, then you need to listen to this.

Best tracks: Half Kleptos, Cryptomnesia, Warren Oates

Latest members reviews

3 stars What if the recently deceased Captain Beefheart decided to make a hardcore punk album? The dissonant harmonies and insistent poly-rhythms make me recall 1969's Trout Mask Replica. To be clear, I'm don't find Don Van Vliet's music pleasing or even regularly listenable: and any self-respecting ... (read more)

Report this review (#361291) | Posted by Brubbrub | Wednesday, December 22, 2010 | Review Permanlink

2 stars Im a huge fan of the Mars Volta, so getting this album with both the frontmen (Cedric Bixler doing the vocals) should be a pleasure. But its not that great ! Its missing out on the melody, and often comes out very confused, and even though its running full speed most of the time, it never get ... (read more)

Report this review (#276648) | Posted by tamijo | Tuesday, April 6, 2010 | Review Permanlink

3 stars For "Cryptomnesia", Omar Rodriguez Lopez arranged one of the best line-ups I've ever seen, of course you get absolutely awesome Omar on guitar, Cedric Bixler Zavala, providing as usual devilish vocals, and Juan Alderete from The Mars Volta, and Jonathan Hischke and Zach Hill from Hella, and damn, ... (read more)

Report this review (#236060) | Posted by JTP88 | Monday, August 31, 2009 | Review Permanlink

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