Live and Local: Marcus Rubio at the Ten Eleven

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SA pop experimentalist Marcus Rubio

Like Nas to the underbelly of Queensbridge and Dante to the nine burroughs of the Inferno, on "welcum 2 hell," Marcus Rubio acted as field guide for the Ten Eleven's crowd, bringing 'em through his vision of eternal suffering: the Northern 'burbs of Los Angeles. "It's like an entire town of La Cantera," Rubio said before busting into the single from his newest LP, Land of Disenfranchisement.

Starting with an engaging brush rhythm and bossa nova bass intervals, "welcum 2 hell" develops into a public relations spiel in which the devil/LA's mayor tries to hide the horrors of the underworld/Los Angeles. "It's better here than you think / our PR firm's working out the kinks / so our image can really sell," Rubio sings before the huge guitar solo.

That tradeoff between crafty songwriting and monstrous instrumental sections defined Rubio's performance. Touring with his backing band the Genius Idiots (considering a name change to the Sheryl Bros), the band tore through Disenfranchisement's deft material. Weird with the best of them but simple when necessary, the Genius Idiots gave Rubio the perfect amount of space to conduct a guitar pedal symphony and shred to his heart's content.

 

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