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The Mars Volta - Octahedron CD (album) cover


The Mars Volta


Heavy Prog

3.64 | 423 ratings

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3 stars I was very disappointed with this album. TMV were one of my favourite new groups of the past decade, but this is their weakest and least proggy album yet. A lot of the songs here sound like they were rejected for other albums because they weren't good enough. Before this came out it was rumoured to be the TMV 'acoustic album'. It is mellower than what came before but not extremely acoustic-oriented. I would refer to this as the 'ballad album' instead. While I usually enjoyed the ballads they did on earlier releases, the ones here are nowhere near as good.

Sustained synth links the tracks together. The two best songs here, "Teflon" and "Cotopaxi", really stand out on this album and sound the most like earlier TMV. "Halo Of Nembutals" is the only other decent song that could have been at home on other albums. "Desperate Graves" is not too bad but would have been filler on the first three albums. "Copernicus" has some interesting IDM-style drum machine programming in the middle, but otherwise this song is just boring. "Since We've Been Wrong" sounds like an attempt at something mainstream but is a very mediocre song.

I liked the previous album Bedlam more than some, but even it was a step down from the first three albums. I think the majority of what Omar has done solo in the last two years is far more interesting and enjoyable than the last two TMV albums. I sure hope their next one is a major improvement over Octahedron. I'm going to rate this a 2.5 but I'll bump it up to 3 stars because the best songs here are actually really good.

zravkapt | 3/5 |


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