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Tag Archive: The Mars Volta


Well that didn’t last very long. After what was a kind of an awkward end to the psychedelic voyage that was The Mars Volta, various sources found Cedric Bixler-Zavala and Omar Rodríguez-López at odds with each other. So it’s surprising to see them together again so soon, this time in Antemasque, alongside previous Mars Volta drummer David Elitch (also at work with Killer Be Killed) and Red Hot Chilli Peppers bassist Flea.

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Yes, Killer Be Killed, that’s the supergroup featuring current and ex-members of The Dillinger Escape PlanSoulflyMastodon and The Mars Volta. Naturally the hype train was in full swing when the first details of this project began to emerge, but, more often than not, supergroups tend to add up to something much different than simply the sum of their parts. So, what exactly does the music say about Killer Be Killed?

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Wild Throne – Blood Maker

wild-throne-blood-maker-coverWild Throne

Blood Maker

01. The Wrecking Ball Unchained
02. Shadow Deserts
03. Blood Maker

[Brutal Panda Records]

Encountering a wild animal, your breath catches in your throat. A million possibilities flash inside your head, racing to find the right reaction and save yourself. As the animal growls,  you realize that now is not the time for decisions, but for guttural reaction. Your chest constricts painfully in anticipation. That constriction of your chest is Blood Maker by Wild Throne. It’s feral, primal and drips a strange, sexual magnetism. Relying on fuzzy guitars, bottomless bass, and frantic drums, Blood Maker reaches into your heart and gives it a rough, glorifying squeeze.

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wild throne

Much like Anciients last year, Wild Throne‘s (formerly known as Dog Shredder) new EP Blood Maker came completely out of nowhere to blindside and provide me with a brand new band to lavish vast amounts of hyperbole on. It’s a rampant mix of The Fall Of Troy if they were heavier, The Mars Volta if they weren’t afraid to ride a huge rocking riff every now and then and Red Fang if they were brought on a steady diet on the two bands previously mentioned. And now it’s available for you to stream in full.

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wild throne

Listening to Wild Throne, it’s hard to pin-point exactly where they’re coming from. One minute they’re crooning a chorus so infectious it’ll have you out in a rash and the next they’re stomping on effect pedals and delivering a whirring cacophony of fuzz and swaggering rock and roll.

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john skibeat

2013 has seen large growths in the, quite frankly, already sweaty regions of punk n’ roll, progressive metal and retro blues rock. Naturally, this has made me a very jolly fellow. You might be able to spot a few of the more impressive additions in my all-singing, all-dancing end of year list. Happy xmas to one and all!

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By now, we’ve all heard about the Dillinger/Mastodon/Soulfly/Mars Volta side project Killer Be Killed. Supergroups rarely amount to anything better than flash in the pan gimmickry, so I’ve remained quietly skeptical on the matter until some music came through the hype machine. However, the first ever promo from the group has been made available so now I can’t control my excitement for some reason.

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I don’t know about you, but I’m having a hard time keeping up with all these Dillinger Escape PlanxMastodonxThe Mars VoltaxCavalera projects that keep coming out of the woodwork. I remember something about ‘Giraffe Tongue Orchestra’ that had Weinman, Hinds and Theodore, then there was the Nailbomb sounding project with Puciato and Cavalera and now there’s this — it looks to be an extension of the second one but how can I be super hyped when I can’t even keep up with the line up? Deep existential questions aside, that roster will easily raise a few eye brows and I’m really interested in what they can come up with. Max detailed the situation in a recent interview with Terrorizer stating the group were about to start recording with a 2014 release in mind:

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Karnivool – Asymmetry

Karnivool - AsymmetryKarnivool


01. Aum
02. Nachash
03. A.M. War
04. We Are
05. The Refusal
06. Aeons
07. Asymmetry
08. Eidolon
09. Sky Machine
10. Amusia
11. The Last Few
12. Float
13. Alpha
14. Om

[Cymatic/Density Records]

With their brilliant sophomore effort, Sound Awake, which was released all the way back in 2009, Karnivool proved themselves to be one of the world’s pre-eminent prog rock bands, capturing the imagination of audiences across the globe with that album’s beautifully melodic vocal and guitar lures and its emotively progressive tapestries, as well as suggesting themselves to be a band of near unmatched potential. Accordingly, it is unsurprising that since that time, the anticipation of what Karnivool might produce with their next offering has been steadily growing, as has the impatience of those eager to re-join the band’s exploration of its musical identity.  However, such exploration takes time, and thus it is after four long years that Karnivool have now finally returned with Asymmetry, an album that is not only by far their most challenging work to date, but one that may also be their most accomplished.

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The Mars Volta

Today is a sad day indeed. The Mars Volta, creators of one of my all-time top ten albums, masterminds of avant-garde/prog rock/space rock/salsacore albums such as The Bedlam In Goliath and my favorite, Frances The Mute have broken up. Damn.

Frontman Cedric Bixlert Zavala announced the breakup via a series of tweets, including:

This sucks. I never had the chance to see them live, but I was hoping they would tour off their new album and that I could see them sometime. Now it looks like it’ll never happen. Such a shame that their relationship soured; they were a great musical pair, and made some of the most memorable rock I’ve ever heard. While their later albums may not have had the same intensity as their earlier records, they were definitely a band that did things differently and made it all work. So R.I.P. The Mars Volta. We’ll miss you.



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