The Mars Volta
Amputechture (Universal / Gold Standard Labs)
Reviewed by Darcie Stevens, Fri., Sept. 29, 2006
The Mars Volta
Amputechture (Universal/Gold Standard Labs)
There's a delicate balance between beauty and insanity. Especially in prog. El Paso's Mars Volta has dived head first into the abyss of self-indulgent, brain-fried wankery, but this you already knew. Like 2003 debut De-Loused in the Comatorium and last year's Frances the Mute, third studio LP Amputechture takes a long, exhausting drive down the dusty roads of West Texas druggy boredom, this time with Chili Pepper guitarist John Frusciante sitting shotgun. Unlike Omar Rodriguez-Lopez and Cedric Bixler-Zavala's previous two concept albums, Amputechture finds the acid dabbledry taking priority over any listening enjoyment. Instead, the 17-minute "Tetragrammaton" and 11-minute "Meccamputechture" are sweaty workouts aimed at guitar supergeeks and molded around a spastic live jam. Opener "Vicarious Atonement" is a slow candlelit serenade, Bixler-Zavala crooning in Spanish/English verse and leaning heavily toward cheese. Spanish ballad "Asilos Magdalena" has a moment of loving clarity, and even the maddening "Viscera Eyes" clocking in at only 9:27 has singular minutes of thrash and roll, but Amputechture is more a series of events than a complete experience. It's as though the Mars Volta is simply seeing what they can get away with.
Kevin Curtin, Fri., May 3, 2013
Luke Winkie, Fri., April 26, 2013
Richard Whittaker, Fri., March 22, 2013
Michael Toland, Fri., March 22, 2013
Austin Powell, Fri., March 15, 2013
True Believers at Antone's
at The Scoot Inn
Lady for a Day at Paramount Theatre
Film Review Misses Mark Please make a note not to print any more movie reviews of big action movies by Kimberley Jones. She gets ...
What's the Big Deal? I'm baffled by this obsession with Mueller. I drove through it out of curiosity and it's a suburban nightmare that ...
No Mystery in School Bond Failures How out of touch has the Chronicle become with the voting populace of this city? From the article “Bonds: Death ...
Program Is Vital Resource I am responding to your article on ACCESS News, the program by and for the deaf and hard-of-hearing community. The ...
Finding Rail Route Complicated Michael King, in “The Reading Railroad”, while making valuable points, seems to state that finding an initial route for urban ...
- Follow us@AustinChronicle