The Mars Volta: Amputechture
Melody-avoiding, free jazz-leaning ‘difficult’ third album
now we’re going to make sure the songs are even more convoluted than ever
‘Amputechture’ has eight songs, some of which clock in at less than 10 minutes, and sees them ditch their trademark goth Mexicana and take prog back to its most classic source, ’70s Pink Floyd, gone a bit mariachi and really really long and really really slow. Its centrepiece is called ‘Meccamputechture’, which sounds like all their best bits thus far, only a bit stoned, but it’s not until the pounding sequence in ‘Viscera Eyes’ that we get anywhere close to a hook. Sure, it’s brave, but there are bits of ‘Amputechture’ that sail perilously away from good honest prog into the realms of free jazz. Nothing good ever came of free jazz, and while they might be having fun in their own timestreams, for the rest of us, the days of At The Drive-In are feeling like a long time ago.
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