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The Mars Volta - The Bedlam In Goliath CD (album) cover

THE BEDLAM IN GOLIATH

The Mars Volta

 

Heavy Prog

3.52 | 502 ratings

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tehkernel
4 stars OK, for one, I used to be a HUGE TMV fan. I still think De-loused in the Comatorium, their first work, is one of the greatest albums ever recorded. So there are a lot of expectations for The Bedlam in Goliath. (Namely, I want to like it as much as De-loused.) But first let me expound on why I used to be a huge fan...

Their sound has not matured much from Frances the Mute, their second album. It doesn't all sound the same (like most rock bands' songs tend to after a few releases), but it just sounds predictable. I personally think a lot of this has to do with songwriter Omar Rodriguez-Lopez's releasing six albums within a year-and-a-half period. Dude needs to take a break! (Though I will say Bedlam is much better than his past few solo releases, and worth listening to. I'll explain now.)

The songs that don't sound like your typical Mars Volta are stellar (Ilyena, Agadez, etc.). The album as a whole works great and flows well. The new drummer is unbelievable. The vocals have calmed down from their last album's style (which is great, because it would get a little too over-the-top on that last release, to the point of causing an earache to the listener.) The groovy parts are SUPER groovy (check out Metatron, Goliath, Ouroborous, to name a few). The music sounds different enough from their past efforts to feel like a culmination of what they've been trying to do since Frances.

So if you can stand to hear a lot of what you would expect with some really, really cool surprises, then this album is for you. If you're not a huge fan of what TMV has done before, then there are only a few songs you'll probably enjoy. I'm surprised that there are a lot of different-sounding songs on the album; ever since Omar started pooping out solo albums in 2006, I've been very skeptical of where The Mars Volta would go next. But they did good.

And the concept of The Bedlam in Goliath being a curse brought upon the band by a Ouija board, plays out well. (Although the album doesn't have any mysterious abilities that I know of... yet!)

-Jacob From my blog: theconobserver.blogspot.com

tehkernel | 4/5 |

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