The Mars Volta

It's been eight years since the break-up of At the Drive-In, the influential post-hardcore El Paso outfit that, post-dissolution, saw its members split off into the separate factions of Sparta and The Mars Volta.

The former took a simple enough alt-rock route to moderate success. The latter, meanwhile, delved off in an altogether new prog rock direction, with nary a glance back. Sure enough, five studio albums later, The Mars Volta's brand of dramatic prog rock remains as vital as ever—perhaps more so, actually, despite what the band says on the matter. Before the June release of the newest disc, Octahedron, vocalist Cedric Bixler-Zavala warned fans that this was to be his band's "pop" and "acoustic" record, signaling a change in pace for the band's direction. Turns out the only thing it signaled was that the band doesn't grasp the meaning of the words "pop" and "acoustic."

Perhaps slightly more melodic and deliberately paced than previous Mars Volta discs, this most recent release is every bit as dramatic as previous ones. And the band will surely prove that onstage this week as it swings back through North Texas on the way home from its latest nationwide tour.

KEEP THE DALLAS OBSERVER FREE... Since we started the Dallas Observer, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Dallas, and we'd like to keep it that way. With local media under siege, it's more important than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" program, allowing us to keep offering readers access to our incisive coverage of local news, food and culture with no paywalls.
Pete Freedman
Contact: Pete Freedman

Latest Stories