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The Mars Volta - Scab Dates CD (album) cover


The Mars Volta


Heavy Prog

2.73 | 113 ratings

From, the ultimate progressive rock music website

4 stars Just to clear this up about whether there are tracks from Frances the Mute on this album (although in Part IV, an extention of Cicatriz, there are a few samples from Cassandra Geminni.) I suppose one could say that there are two songs from Deloused in the Comatorium, but they are so different from the original that I wouldn't even say that that would apply. This is roughly 80% all new music, and even the old stuff is rather retooled.

Coming into this album I had very low expectations because of the previews the band released--most notably the wretched excerpt from the end of "Take the Veil Cerpin Taxt," in which Cedric wails "who brought me here?" in a way very remeniscient of an angsty teen bawling about his imagined gripes. HOWEVER, it turns out I was pleasantly suprised.

Let's be frank. The vocals Cedric has to preform aren't easy in the least. And this man has never stayed still on stage a moment in his life. So it stands to reason that at times the vocals won't be perfect; and they aren't, but the end result in the great majority of the album is very good. Omar's guitar work on this album is fantastic, and the rest of the band also preforms very well. As has already been stated, this work is highly improv, but also has an excellent sound collage lasting about 10 minutes in the latter half of the album, on the last track, which builds to a frenzy for the finale. Also, the words the listener is left with are pure gold. But you'll hear that, I'm sure.

All in all, yes, this would have made a much, much better DVD, I'm sure. I haven't seen The Mars Volta live yet, but I have seen At the Drive-In, and if that's any indication of the energy they put in nowadays (and everyone tells me it is) then I can't wait for these guys to put out a DVD. This CD certainly isn't an essential, but it's pretty darn good.

Shaikoten | 4/5 |


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