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The Mars Volta - Amputechture CD (album) cover

AMPUTECHTURE

The Mars Volta

 

Heavy Prog

3.86 | 452 ratings

From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

zravkapt
Special Collaborator
Post/Math Rock Team
4 stars I believe this to be TMV's best album. I think they started to go downhill after this, but went very slowly down that hill. In fact, I think Omar spent so much time making 3.5 billion solo albums in the past 3 years that he forgot TMV even existed. Some, nay, many say Francis was the last good album. Or some will even say De-loused was their only good album. What Amputechture has over Francis is that the ratio of music to sound effects is 95/5, whereas on Francis that ratio is 60/40. In many ways this album is more stereotypical 'prog' than the first two. There is also saxophone on this which adds to the music. I'm not sure why Chili Pepper Frusciante plays on TMV albums, I'm sure Omar could do all the guitar parts himself. Maybe when Frusciante records his parts, Omar sneaks off to make another solo album. I dunno.

The lyrics here are just as nonsensical as you would expect them to be. But honestly, I'd rather listen to: "Glossolalia coats my skin/Glycerin and turbulence/Stuffed the voice of God/Mirrors to the animals" than to somebody preaching to me about how awful the world is. I *know* how awful the world is, that's why I listen to music to get away from it! I actually don't think the vocals of Cedric are quite as annoying here as they are on other TMV albums. A bonus of course. Generally there is so much going on in the mix that it's hard to tell exactly what instruments you are listening too half the time. This could be good or bad but here tends towards the former. "Asilos Magdelena" is a nice acoustic ballad sung in Spanish(are Cedric's Spanish lyrics as crazy as his English ones?), but it starts off with spacy sound effects and ends with weird modified vocals and some not-so-nice electric guitar. So, don't expect this almost lovely song to get played on your local radio station anytime soon.

"Day Of The Baphomets" has some really great bass soloing at the beginning. There is so much going on in this song, it just changes constantly but is never boring. A clear highlight. I might even go so far as to say it's one of my top 3 favourite TMV songs. The album ends on the very anti-climatic "El Ciero Vulnerado" which just ends abruptly. One of the main reasons this won't get 5 stars from me. But at least it's the last song, and this is a long album. So 4 stars it is.

zravkapt | 4/5 |

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