Aftermath: The Mars Volta Gets All Violently Cosmic At Verizon Wireless Theater
|Photos by Eric Sauseda|
Since the dissolution of the seminal At the Drive-In, guitarist Omar Alfredo Rodriguez-Lopez and singer Cedric Bixler-Zavala have been spinning snaky webs of cosmic post-punk Santana-inflected jams. Their live show harkens back to the days when Hawkwind and the MC5 cracked the Earth, and when proto-punks and heshers roamed freely together under one halo of fragrant smoke and fog. Each guitar stab and drum breaks sounds like the music inhaling and exhaling. Trust us, that wasn't just the contact high talking right there.
It was the new material off of this year's Octahedron that telegraphed this new streamlined direction, and all the songs still give the band plenty of room to stretch and wander when they need to. They turned that albums standout "Teflon" into a Tool-worthy expanse of feedback, with Bixler-Zavala's haunted falsetto acting as stunted tour guide. In fact the consensus on that new album is that it is actually closer to the ATDI output than anything Volta has put out in the past seven years since the old band's break-up. As much as Aftermath would love to see ATDI return once again, the Mars Volta is a way stranger, fulfilling, and visceral ride to go on by far.
6. HALO OF NEMBUTALS
10. DRUNKENSHIP OF LANTERNS
12. THE WIDOW
13. WAX SIMULACRA
For even more lysergic-tinted goodness, click here for a slideshow of infinitely tight pants and crazy indie-afros...