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The Mars Volta - Amputechture CD (album) cover


The Mars Volta


Heavy Prog

3.89 | 645 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
3 stars The Mars Volta - 'Amputechture' 3.8 stars

The Mars Volta's 'Tales from Topographic Oceans'.

This music by Omar Rodriguez-Lopez and lyrics by Cedrid Bixlar-Zavala create their most obscure one yet with this release. It took me about 5 spins to like it and after 20 spins to recognize one or two songs without looking to see which one is being played. I find this album to be the worst so far because I think this album was just released at a bad time. Omar's compositions are definitely his most complete and varied and the music in a whole is extremely complex. I tend to think this music is avant-garde at times. There is also more brass instrumentation included, not necessarily arranged, but part of that actual music itself.

Some problems with this album are the opener and closing songs 'Vicarious Atonement' and 'El Ciervo Vulnerado'. There are both similar in that it is just extremely slow and atmospheric. Not necessarily a bad thing but when they combine for a total of over 15 minutes it seriously annoys me. Like a hamburger, the meat and toppings are absolutely superb. The only exception is 'Asilos Magdalena' which is in my opinion the worst Mars Volta song so far. Just sounds like a representation of slow Spanish cultural music which I am not found of. 'Viscera Eyes' which was turned into a single from the album is a little too long to be that great in my opinion. Anyway, more of half this album contains excellent music. 'Vermicide' is the only piece that has any sort of structure to it and is one I consider the best. The three pieces that go above 10 minutes are all very good. 'Day of the Baphomets' is one of them that I still don't understand and the only song on the album that I cannot remember anything from after 20 listens. It is that much of a complex track that it is impossible to memorize, which I think is brilliant.

Really complex arrangements on this album that I doubt The Mars Volta will go beyond these borders. This is one of those albums that might get more popular as they put out more music and stick out like a sore thumb in their library. A 'Tales from Topographic Oceans' if you will.

ProgBagel | 3/5 |


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