Strunz & Farah haven't been much of a critics' favorite, although they have many admirers among great musicians, including the legendary Paco de Lucia. Listening to the guitar duo, it's easy to understand both sides. Both players have incredible technique, with bursts of passion. But at the same time, their new flamenco seems like a watered-down version of "real" flamenco. However, if you take Rio de Colores at face value, as an album of instrumentals colored by the Mediterranean, the Middle East, and even Latin America, it's an outstanding piece of work, although more reflective than some of their other albums -- however, the opener, "Matambu," offers plenty of emotion. The title cut flows gently through several moods, and both "Bandari" and "Arabesca" show the links between flamenco and North Africa in the rhythms and melodies. There's no faulting the playing throughout, and the charango offers some lovely Latin touches. So it may not be to everyone's taste, but the fans will love it, and it's one of their best sets to date.