As a guitarist, Reeves Gabrels is recognized for his virtuosity and versatility, able to “explore sonic extremes with a great, adaptive intuition for what each song needs most.” He has also been characterized as “one of the most daring rock-guitar improvisers since Jimi Hendrix.”
As a songwriter and composer, Gabrels spanned genres. The songs on Ulysses, an album from 2000, range from “hard-hitting blues rock to 21st century electronica,” as Guitar World reviewer Gary Graff put it.
Describing Rockonica, in 2005 Guitar Player’s Andy Ellis wrote online, “Reeves Gabrels walks the line between song structure and wiggy sonics like no one else… His tunes on Rockonica have familiar verse/chorus construction (and are often maddeningly catchy), and his riffs and solos typically possess the contours that define classic rock. But bubbling and roiling under and around this foundation are layers of eerie, broken sounds and oddball textures. And Gabrels isn’t shy about juxtaposing genres. For example, ‘Underneath’ ends with a trippy mélange of Wheels of Fire-era Clapton licks, acoustic Delta blues riffs, and fluttering, guitar-generated helicopter sounds.