Release Date: May 5, 2009
Record label: Rodriguez Lopez Productions
Genre(s): Rock, Experimental
Released on Cinco de Mayo, Cryptomnesia (defined as "inadvertent plagiarism") is the first of three recordings done in 2006 by El Grupo Nuevo de Omar Rodriguez-Lopez, a side project of the guitarist and producer of the Mars Volta. Rodriguez-Lopez enlisted the talents of bandmate Juan Alderete de la Peña on bass and Zach Hill and Jonathan Hischke of Hella on drums and synth bass, respectively, along with Mars Volta frontman Cedric Bixler-Zavala for lyrics and vocals on eight of the album's 11 cuts. Rodriguez-Lopez has been prolific since the middle of the aughts, issuing no less than ten previous recordings on various labels since 2004! While the most recent ones have revealed a more experimental and formal compositional bent and elaborate production, this earlier material is no less wildly creative and daring, though it can be seen as a much more logical extension of the Mars Volta's musical adventures than as something with his own complete musical stamp on it, as his more recent recordings have been.
The Mars Volta, at both their best and their worst, often sound like several different bands going in several different directions at once. But love them or hate them, no one could ever fairly accuse the group of caving in to critics and abandoning their mission. Indeed, the Mars Volta's main drivers, Omar Rodriguez-Lopez and Cedric Bixler-Zavala, are like id-mobiles stuck permanently in high gear; they'd rather hit a brick wall head on than back up or turn around, to hell with anyone that would suggest otherwise.
EL GRUPO NUEVO DE OMAR RODRIGUEZ LOPEZ“Cryptomnesia”(Rodriguez Lopez Productions) So many jumpy, frenetic, whipsawing guitar lines go zooming through Omar Rodriguez Lopez’s head that his main band, the Mars Volta, can’t hold them all. That’s why he has his own extensive catalog of solo albums and collaborations, largely (but not entirely) instrumental works like “Old Money” (Stone’s Throw), which was released earlier this year. (The next Mars Volta album is due in June.) “Cryptomnesia” tilts toward songs instead.