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The Mars Volta - Scab Dates CD (album) cover


The Mars Volta


Heavy Prog

2.73 | 113 ratings

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Prog Leviathan
Prog Reviewer
3 stars Fans of Mars Volta who haven't seen the band live yet (like me), will probably be disappointed by this attempt to capture a performance which comes across as too ephemeral to understand second-hand; there is a lot going on here, but much of it is so abstract as to be unintelligible directly-- it's best just to go along for the ride.

That being said, "Scab Dates" features powerful versions of a few great Mars Volta songs, which have plenty of improvisation and tweaked moments to almost make them unrecognizable until Bixler sings a chorus or two. The moments where we do get to listen to straightforward guitar destruction and various instrumental awesomeness is quite enjoyable.

The end result is one which will usually impress the listener but also leave them scratching their head, wondering just what the heck is going on stage at the time... or why the middle of songs fade to voyeuristic/psychedelic voice-overs and fadeouts. These crazy moments do detract from the music, but, hey-- you like Mars Volta BECAUSE they're crazy, right?

Setlist 2 Instrumental Performances 4 Stage Energy 3 Live Experience 4

Prog Leviathan | 3/5 |


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