The Mars Volta - De-Loused in the Comatorium
Jul 28, 2020
83
Clearly never settling for the sound of post-hardcore, Cedric Bixler-Zavala and Omar Rodríguez-López of At the Drive-In branch out into one of the most strange and rewarding experimental groups of that decade, The Mars Volta. Taking progressive rock to new extremes, both mainstay members work together to arrange chaotically performed songs and original yet unbelievable lyrical concepts. The end result is their debut, De-Loused in the Comatorium.

Detailing the character of Cerpin Taxt, this long and winding hour of manipulated sound, dissonant guitar patterns, and insane vocal performances makes for a constantly engaging listen. It's by no means easy; I could imagine your average listener would be turned off by the eclectic style of The Mars Volta almost immediately.

If you can arrive somewhere passed all the chaos and frenzied energy, there are dense layers underlying each of these songs. Bringing in elements of jazz, Latin music, electronica, and even the post-hardcore roots of At the Drive-In, nothing seems out of bounds for Bixler-Zavala and Rodríguez-López as musical composers. The songs require such long forms to come to a logical conclusion, given all these layers, making them massive and impossibly fully digestible without a long session of chewing.

The kind of music you would expect a more experimental fan to enjoy, De-Loused in the Comatorium is a phenomenal debut for anyone looking for something musically different from effectively anything else out there. The Mars Volta have always stood out to me as a special act, able to exist in their own realm outside of existence, and this debut sets the tone for the rest of their time together.

Favorite track: Eriatarka

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