The Mars Volta [Archive] - Audio & Video Forums


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11-18-2003, 10:08 AM
So, I'm in a CD store, in a mall, and ask some kid if they have the new Dream Theater in yet. Well, they didn't. But me and this kid start to talk about music and he actually seems to know what he's talking about! Surprising to find in a mall for some reason.

So we're chatting about prog and metal and other things and he asks me, have I heard of The Mars Volta. I hadn't. He grabs the CD and throws it into a listening station for me and I am wowed. Then I made him listen to In Absentia and he is wowed!

So, I buy this Mars Volta CD (called "de-loused in the comatorium") and listen to it, in full, over the weekend. It's excellent. The kid described it to me as "the harder side of Dream Theater". I think that's a pretty accurate description. Good drums and guitar. The CD rocks with some nice dreamier, prog-like moments thrown in.

I think that I've seen this name thrown around here before, but I'm not sure. Anyone else know this band? If not, it's definately worth checking out if you like that sort of thing.

I did finally get the new DT today. I'm listening to it now and have already had one of my collegues ask me to turn it down.....usually the sign of a great CD. ;)

11-18-2003, 10:41 AM
I'm not all that totally familiar with DE-LOUSED, but I will say that they're a splinter group from a very highly reviewed but now defunct emo/hardcore band called At The Drive In. They were poised to take the world by storm when they split up. Oh well. Part of the group formed a band called Sparta and the other two formed Mars Volta. I can't say you'd like either Sparta or At the Drive In. But it's interesting how they've made the crossover to a more prog sound. Sunny Day Real Estate is another emo band that ventured into proggy music, but now they're called the Fire Theft. I'm sure others will chime in.


11-18-2003, 10:54 AM
I think Troy has mentioned Mars Volta before. I don't remember what he thought of it though. Sounds interesting Autumn so thanks for bringing that up. I've been hearing a lot of good things regarding that A Perfect Circle release as well. I may have to check that too.

I went into Barnes and Noble yesterday to pick up the new DT and those potlickers wanted $19 for it. I told the sales staff that I could order this online through BN's website for $13.50 and asked why it was so expensive in the store. They had no answer for me. So today I ordered the new DT and the Two Towers extended edition DVD and got them both for $38 with free shipping.


11-18-2003, 12:42 PM
It's on my laptop and I'm at work so the sound isn't the best and I can't crank it up too loud (remember the complaining collegue?)

So far there's some good and some bad. I'll need to listen to it some more and on better speakers before I can make a proper judgement. But Petrucci is outstanding! I'm listening to a track called Stream of Consciousness and the speed in which he plays made my jaw drop. (no smiley for a dropping jaw)

11-18-2003, 01:18 PM
I posted this review on another board:

It's getting lots of comparisons to all manner of old-timey hard rock bands like Zeppelin, Santana and Rush in the press. I hear all those bands in here along with stuff like Bends era Radiohead and even some new-metal hardcore noise. It creates a hodge-podge sound that is too hectic and disjointed and just kinda ugly. The songs sound like the titles of the songs read. "Cicatriz ESP"? "Inertiatic ESP"? Inconprehensible and pointless.

There's a lot of spacy effects sections in the long songs sandwiched between lots of heavy metal punch. No question, the thing rawks and rawks hard, but none of it really makes sense or fits together. Just because you can build a 45 second trippy swirl of space synths for every six minutes of other music doesn't mean that you can just stick it anyplace. These guys don't understand that these trippy sections HAVE TO serve the musical parts of the song. The writing is just plain weak, forgoing any melodic sense for the big and nasty sounding guitar grind, VERY typical of hard modern rock.

I'm surprised to see it's getting so much press and to see it actually charting. I bought the new Grandaddy album Sumday that same afternoon and have been playing that one constantly. Sumday is also receiving a lot of press and charting. It too has some very proggy moments on it as well, but is more melodic and thought provoking than MV. But the fact that EITHER band is getting noticed by the mainstream is heartening. Perhaps this is indicative of listeners simply BEGGING to be challenged musically? Seems to me that the public may finally be swinging away from the bland and obvious junk it's being force fed. This COULD be the time for new prog-bands to make their mark . . . so long as they don't call themselves "prog-bands".

I don't dig De Loused. It's just not this old geezer's bag. But I bet there's a lot of 25 years olds out there that WILL. There's a whole lot better music out there that falls under "challenging" and "artful" that deserves this band's press.

Dusty Chalk
11-18-2003, 03:50 PM
Troy and I had a "discussion" about this when he heard it and posted that review. Here ('s what I had to say back to him. I'm particularly fond of my "flows like geography" comment, and I stand by it.

Here ('s another link (Head-Fi discussion).

Finch Platte
11-19-2003, 06:02 AM
How were you able to get him to listen to PT? Was he able to walk over and take one out of the rack and open it so he could listen to it? Or, do you carry all of your favorite CDs around with you? (I know you carry all the ones I've sent you, and I guess I should send you the Joss CD, but with all that's happened around here lately, I've been confused). Or, did you run back out to the car as fast as your little legs could go to retrieve the PT disc (with the mall security running after you- shouting "stop! STOP!! because they didn't know why you were running?

Anyhoo- a friend just sent me the Mars Volta, and boy, is it weird. It is convoluted and messy, disjointed and sporadic, annoying and complex, and I still don't know if I like it. Repeated listenings will tell, or do me in, whatever comes first.

So, anyone used to this forum, yet? Why is your post last when I am responding to it? It makes it hard to scroll down to read what you wrote so I can respond to it. I hate having to remember who has responded to my posts so I can go back and read them. I guess I should continue to write my posts in a way no one will respond, eh?

Ramble on.


11-19-2003, 07:32 AM
I play a wicked air guitar, and I sang it to him. He was notably impressed.