15 Songs, 1 Hour 25 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

Part-metal, part-funk, part-prog rock, part dada art project, the Mars Volta slice and dice rhythms, riffs and concepts with little concern for their overall cohesion. In fact, sharp, disparate chaos only excites them further. The string-mangling comes from all directions throughout their fourth studio album, 2008’s The Bedlam in Goliath. The excited hot rail lead guitars of the tune “Goliath” jumpstart singer Cedric Bixler-Zayala’s manic inquisitions until he screeches like an excited puppy midway through the seven-minute epic. It stands as a message coded in tongues. (The lyrics were allegedly inspired in part by a Ouija board guitarist-producer Omar Rodriguez-Lopez found in Jerusalem.) Mythmaking is part of this ensemble’s stock in trade, and the mystical titles are met with music every bit as cryptic and deliberately weird. Red Hot Chili Peppers guitarist John Frusciante adds his share of twisted riffs, and the band play tug-of-war within the time signatures of each tune, creating a funk that isn’t always danceable but remains consistently guttural and alluringly middle-Eastern. “Metatron” breaks down into near incoherency. “Cavaletta” pummels with nervous tension. Score one for chaos.

EDITORS’ NOTES

Part-metal, part-funk, part-prog rock, part dada art project, the Mars Volta slice and dice rhythms, riffs and concepts with little concern for their overall cohesion. In fact, sharp, disparate chaos only excites them further. The string-mangling comes from all directions throughout their fourth studio album, 2008’s The Bedlam in Goliath. The excited hot rail lead guitars of the tune “Goliath” jumpstart singer Cedric Bixler-Zayala’s manic inquisitions until he screeches like an excited puppy midway through the seven-minute epic. It stands as a message coded in tongues. (The lyrics were allegedly inspired in part by a Ouija board guitarist-producer Omar Rodriguez-Lopez found in Jerusalem.) Mythmaking is part of this ensemble’s stock in trade, and the mystical titles are met with music every bit as cryptic and deliberately weird. Red Hot Chili Peppers guitarist John Frusciante adds his share of twisted riffs, and the band play tug-of-war within the time signatures of each tune, creating a funk that isn’t always danceable but remains consistently guttural and alluringly middle-Eastern. “Metatron” breaks down into near incoherency. “Cavaletta” pummels with nervous tension. Score one for chaos.

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