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The Mars Volta - Noctourniquet CD (album) cover


The Mars Volta


Heavy Prog

3.52 | 320 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
3 stars If you look at my previous reviews of TMV, you will know I like these guys, maybe even more than justifiable. Alas, past performance does not guarantee future results, as they are quick to say when you're about to lose a few bucks on some album.

This starts out as possibly the worst TMV album ever recorded. Nothing of note happens, until...

Empty Vessels Make the Loudest Sound hearkens back to the melodic glory of the former albums, with fine Frippy guitars and the yearning for...empty vessels to fill, just to hear the fine noise that emits from therein. The solo guitar limning the melody, the voices riding it over it, the pure echoing guitars in the background, "searching for a lighthouse in the fog", until all erupts. The melodic skill at this point is just in their blood and it seems almost illegally easy, and it just wafts from the vocals to the guitars, back and forth.

Really, you listen to songs like these, they walk up to you on the street, and in spite of their somewhat questionable looks, well you can't help but sight unseen buy a bridge from them when it's offered. It'd be a good bridge too, and they'd throw in an unforgettable hook. That's how these guys work when they are on.

There are many similar moments here. That's the problem...they are moments.

You see and hear them coming, almost instinctually, and get across the street as soon as possible to avoid the inevitable mugging, the bloody mouth, the semi-concussion, and the missing wallet, not to mention how you're going to explain that long blonde hair on your jacket to your wife.

Still a solid album, I'd say.

jammun | 3/5 |


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