The Mars Volta

The Bedlam In Goliath

Written by: PP on 08/02/2008 04:56:27

Is there a limit to the creative genius of Cedric Bixler, Omar Rodriguez-Lopez and The Mars Volta? We\'ve seen the duo first introduce their psychedelic progressive rock sound on the relatively straight forward debut \"De-Loused In The Comatorium\" to lure us into a never-before heard dimension of music we never even knew existed, then expand it in about a hundred different dimension simultaneously with the intense, schizophrenic Latin jazz/progressive rock fusion album \"Frances The Mute\", which to date the fewest are able to understand, after which the band calmed down a bit on 2006\'s \"Amputechture\", an album which was solid but is nonetheless considered as the band\'s weakest to date. So what are some of this planet\'s most creative musicians offering this time around? \"The Bedlam In Goliath\", undeniably the band\'s best album to date unless you belong to Mensa and the aforementioned \"Frances The Mute\" fan club.

If \"De-Loused..\" was the bands simplest material instrumentally, \"Frances The Mute\" the most complex, and \"Amputechture\" somewhere in between, \"The Bedlam In Goliath\" places itself comfortably between the latter two. Rodriguez-Lopez\'s impossible guitar work has returned to its most schizophrenic, while Bixler revisits the wild and powerful vocal harmonies of the debut album.

This is of course exactly what everyone has wanted from The Mars Volta all along.

Think of insane prog rock passages improvised from pure imagination that suddenly morph into effect-laden depictions of pure ambient chaos. Followed by overwhelming jazz sections with everything from violin to saxophone to clarinet used to create one hell of an instrumental chaos which, against all logical odds, wind up into sheer progressive music godhood. Think majestic arrangements that approach the instrumental perfection of a Tool album, only from a jazz-fusion perspective with a distinctly Latin soundscape. The only way you could come up with this fucked up music is on hard drugs. That\'s probably why there are so many zoned out sessions on the album, which emerge from seemingly nowhere and erupt into more rhythmic pulsations quicker than you can reach the end of this sentence. There are moments on the album where The Mars Volta depart entirely from our universe and land on some psychedelic jazz-funk-groove planet, with each band member rocking away doing their own thing, while somehow managing, perhaps telepathically, to stay in connection with each other. But on contrast, there are moments, such as those on the band\'s best track to date \"Metatron\", where the band is so accessible you could almost imagine them being on the radio... that is until another five minutes of Rodriguez-Lopez\'s soloing kicks in. Meanwhile, of course, the rest of the band attempts to render time signatures into oblivion by each following the voices in their head (they must surely exist!).

On \"The Bedlam In Goliath\", you\'ll get to experience The Mars Volta at their catchiest, most chaotic, most experimental, and most accessible, all at the same time. How that paradoxical statement is even possible I\'m not attempting to explain. \"The Bedlam In Goliath\" is the masterpiece of a band that strives not only for instrumental perfection, but even more so for expansion of their sound in ways no-one thought possible. The first candidate for the album of the year.


Download: Metatron, Wax Simulcra, Cavalettas
For the fans of: Tool, Dream Theater, Muse, Coheed & Cambria
Listen: Myspace
Buy: iTunes

Release date 29.01.2008

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