AOTY 2023
The Mars Volta - The Bedlam in Goliath
Mar 21, 2023
Another solid record that may not be as huge as their previous records but still has some bangers on it and still shows the band sticking to their progressive rock roots. We can hear Cedric's vocals going over-the-top even more with sound effects layering on his voice and everything else playing out loud with a bit of middle-eastern influence without any breaks as shown in the first track which immediately takes us into a loud chorus. It's the first record with the band's new drummer Thomas Pridgen and the last record to have sound manipulator Paul Hinojos, wind multi-instrumentalist Adrián Terrazas-González, and keyboardist Isaiah "Ikey" Owens.

It's the band's first 12-track record still being 75 minutes with a lot of songs still reaching over 5-minutes long. All of the songs on here are super avant-prog and is like a car holding on the pedal with no stopping. I found myself liking the albums singles Wax Simulacra with it's fast drums and memorable chorus and and Goliath with it's groove-based verses and fast guitar solos full of energy. The first track in the album Aberinkula makes a good opener to the album and really showcases what to expect throughout the next hour with Cedric's vocals reaching an all new high with effects being brought into his voice and the memorable guitar phrases and the go ham sax playing and this theme pretty much continues on for most of the album. It gets repetitive at some moments but the album definitely has some of its highs and I think it's all worth listening to.

It's still very good album from the band despite maybe not reaching the once high fame they had from their first two albums and maybe not as good as Amputechture (which I think is better than this album) but this album still has a lot of highlights in it that I think help make it distinct from their other albums and still shows how the band can be unique with their releases and the kinds of things to appreciate with their albums. The Bedlam in Goliath show the band still making hard-hitting material and have an assortments of different tracks to go ham out with and makes it a good record to add some great songs to an already amazing sound of a band with some of the best prog that's been made in awhile.

Favorite Tracks: Aberinkula, Metatron, Ilyena, Wax Simulacra, Goliath, Agadez, Ouroborous, Soothsayer

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