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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Sheer Bedlam indeed!!
There is no let up in this, The Mars Volta's fourth album. From the full on opening rush of "Aberinkula" there is no room to breath throughout the 12 tracks on this monster of an album. The 13th track here is a cover of the Pink Floyd b-side "Candy and a Currant Bun".

The usual frenetic Mars Volta style is here intact, but there is an increasing maturity coming...
Published on 8 Feb 2008 by Dr. D. B. Sillars

versus
2.0 out of 5 stars this cover is wrong
well i like the mars volta a lot and i already have the bedlam in goliath but i wanted to buy this version because it's different, or not! this cover don't exist(just in the photo )and it will came as the same as the ''normal'' edition, the site says it's content have 3 cds and there will only be 2. getting this things out of the way it's a wonderfull cd.
Published on 19 Feb 2012 by otto


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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Sheer Bedlam indeed!!, 8 Feb 2008
By 
Dr. D. B. Sillars - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (REAL NAME)   
This review is from: The Bedlam in Goliath (Audio CD)
There is no let up in this, The Mars Volta's fourth album. From the full on opening rush of "Aberinkula" there is no room to breath throughout the 12 tracks on this monster of an album. The 13th track here is a cover of the Pink Floyd b-side "Candy and a Currant Bun".

The usual frenetic Mars Volta style is here intact, but there is an increasing maturity coming into the maelstrom of sound. This is especially prevalent on the very excellent "Ouroborous" which is wonderfully arranged and executed. This track itself shows a compositional sophistication beyond which the group has rarely achieved before. Brilliant stuff! That's not to say the rest of the album lacks, it doesn't. There are so many great musical ideas on show here. For instance, the strange way throughout "Cavalettas" each verse fades out and then comes back in is inspired and really works.

For me I can always hear in the Mars Volta style King Crimson, Yes circa "Relayer", electric Miles Davis and especially on this album the be-bop thrash of John Zorn's long gone Naked City project. But the band has developed so much throughout their four albums, to a point where anything is possible in the future. "The Bedlam In Goliath" is a truly individual, inspired and exciting rock album from a band who continually push themselves forward. There are very few who are willing to do that nowadays.
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19 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The best yet, 16 Mar 2008
By 
TT1 "TT1" (South Shields, UK) - See all my reviews
This review is from: The Bedlam in Goliath (Audio CD)
Well, it's interesting to read reviews, even the guy who made the Radiohead and Cream comment. I'm 54 and saw both bands live, as well as Floyd, Softs, Hendrix, Zeppelin, Pistols etc. I stopped going to live gigs as I felt I was getting a bit old. However, as TMV are without doubt the best band I've heard I went to the Glasgow gig, expecting not too much bearing in mind the complex studio album productions.Wrong: they were superb with the same undiluted energetic commitment (and fun)and I'm glad they are here. Sure, buy Goliath. Most people won't, but that's most people for you.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wow, 3 Feb 2008
By 
T. Bradshaw (Manchester, UK) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: The Bedlam in Goliath (Audio CD)
I'm glad someone has mentioned Dark Magus already. The words rip off are far to strong, but lets just say that it's probably an album they've been listening to a lot lately.
Another thing I feel I should mention (because even after all this time, it seems a lot of people have still to get their heads around this one); the Mars Volta are NOT ATDI under a different name, and they never intended to be. They are a very different (and in my opinion, far superior) beast.
One last thing; they are the dreaded P word. Now, if I don't like a musical genre, I don't listen to it. However, people who don't like prog seem to want to listen to it in order to criticise it, which I just feel is immature. If you want to listen to a band like the Mars Volta, you should expect long tracks, you should expect noodling, and you should expect everything else that comes with the genre. To be fair, they don't push things half as far as they've been pushed in the past.

So, The Bedlam in Goliath then. It does feel like they've taken their music and trimmed all the "pointless" bits off, to leave a sort of low fat alternative. However, it's now that we can see exactly what the point of the "pointless" bits are: just a bit of a break from the insanity! TBiG starts, then it's a good 20 minutes of relentless intensity before you even get a chance to breathe. And then it's straight back into it! On the first few listens it was just far too much to take in at once, and because there's very little to contrast it, the insane bits don't seem to have the edge that they had in previous albums. It was all just a bit of a disappointment.
However, I was wrong to doubt them. A few more listens and the subtleties start to shine through. In my opinion the album could benefit from a bit more variety in intensity, but there's certainly no drop in musical standards. The guitaring is, as you would expect, outstanding; the drumming is breathtaking; and although featured a lot less in this album (much to my disappointment) the keys do shine through on occasion. As usual, it sounds like an ensemble playing where every member has their own conductor and their own agenda, but as usual it all works together in a way that would have any composer left scratching their head.
This album certainly isn't gonna win the band many new fans, but I don't think that ever really is the plan. Fans (especially ones of the last two albums) will probably love it (the reviews here seem to suggest that), and although there will be the cynical few who go out of their way to tell everyone how bad it is, the music stands up for itself (after the difficult first few listens anyway) as being another satisfactory chapter in the bands growing legacy.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars What an album!, 25 April 2008
By 
Dafydd Jones "MetalliManic" (Aberystwyth, Ceredigion United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: The Bedlam in Goliath (Audio CD)
This is more familiar territory for Omar Rodriguez Lopez's project, The Mars Volta. What we get here is 12 tracks (and a bonus one) spread over 79 minutes. So you could argue it is value for money.

The Mars Volta are a mix between Pink Floyd and Dream Theater and a slight amount of Spock's Beard. They are mostly like a modern Pink Floyd but heavier, hence the Dream Theater input. And with John Frusciante of Chili Peppers fame on guest guitar throughout the album, it provides a nice cohesion to the album.

This album has a weird vibe to it, and standout tracks include the opener, `Aberinkula', with its progressive guitar passages and the odd saxophone section which seemed so prominent on a Pink Floyd record about thirty or more years ago.

This is certainly more of an album in the niche of `De-Loused in the Comatorium' than in `Frances the Mute' which was disappointing. `Metatron' justifies that. The music is more punchy, and the lyrics more progressive and anagrammatic by Lopez. A clever musician he most certainly is. Plays the drums, guitar and has Frusciante to help him on his heavier bits where two guitars are needed and in the solos.

Some tracks are more interesting than others - `Wax Simulacra' is one of these. The titles are mind-boggling, sure. And some might confuse Lopez's almost falsetto voice to that of Coheed and Cambria's lead singer, another rather progressive band. Recommended if you are a fan of the Mars Volta like myself.

On first impression, a Mars Volta album is difficult to digest all at once. And at nearly 80 minutes, it is. But like many good albums, you get into it the more you listen to it. There might be something you failed to pick up on before and the quality of the music is excellent.

The good points then: It is the Mars Volta at their best, a great return to form, with excellent guitar passages, mind-boggling lyrics, an astonishing voice and challenging time sequences. And John Frusciante on guest guitar. I mean, what more can you ask for?

The bad points: Not many. If anything, it's slightly too long, but then it's value for money. Slightly repetitive at times on a few occasions.

For fans of: Pink Floyd, Dream Theater, Porcupine Tree, Spock's Beard, Mastodon and Tool.

Sound quality: 10/10
Tracks:

Aberinkula: 9.5/10
Metatron: 9/10
Ilyena: 8.5/10
Wax Simulacra: 9/10
Goliath: 9.5/10
Tourniquet Man: 9/10
Cavalettas: 8/10
Agadez: 9/10
Askepios: 9/10
Ouroborous: 9/10
Soothsayer: 8.5/10
Conjugal Burns: 9/10
Candy and a Currant Bun: 7.5/10

There is no need for the bonus track in reality. It lets the end of the album down. Otherwise it is a magnificent album. It really is.

Overall verdict: 9/10

The Mars Volta return to top form. We look forward to their next offering already!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A more focussed effort than the last two, 29 Jan 2008
By 
E Parry (UK) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: The Bedlam in Goliath (Audio CD)
After the runaway success of Deloused in the Comatorium, it seemed The Mars Volta were determined not to repeat such mainstream success. Frances the Mute featured 5 very long songs, the last of which was over 30 minutes long, and the rest of which all seemed to descend into bizarre noise collages rather than end properly. Amputechture featured less seemingly-pointless noise, although one look at it's track times would put a lot of people off - the intro is over 7 minutes, while the next track is almost 17 minutes, and it featured what many described as weird-for-the-sake-of-it progness. Musically accomplished as they might be, it seemed that they were almost going out of their way to avoid being accused of crowd-pleasing.

That's not to say that The Bedlam In Goliath is the most accessible album that will be released this year, but it trims off the pointless excesses of the last two albums. You know from the second the first track starts that this album is not going to mess around and risk becoming in any way meandering, and that's confirmed when the track ends and without so much as pausing for breath the second track, Metatron kicks in. The style of the music on this album reminds me a lot of Amputechture, they even seem to have (dare I say it) re-used a few ideas from there, but they've done what I always thought they should have done with Amputechture; rather than cramming a million ideas into a few overstuffed 15-minute epics, they've taken them and developed them into 12 shorter (relatively) but more compact and well-structured songs.

This isn't necessarily an easy record, I'd say that the first half is more accessible than the second for one thing, and it still runs to over 70 minutes in total. It is, in my opinion, the best album they've made since De-Loused In The Comatorium, and definately the most tightly-focussed and satisfying.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars sheer brilliance shines through musical bedlam, 29 Jan 2008
This review is from: The Bedlam in Goliath (Audio CD)
When I first heard TMV were releasing a new album, the expectation was high. Enormously high. Not only have they managed to hook me completely with their last three albums (excluding live) but it's hard to imagine where they could have gone from 'Amputechture'. Having purchased the CD this morning, listened to the bedlam all day, I am once again amazed. They've pulled it off- an amzing album, from the King Crimson references to the mind-boggling lyrics Cedric has layed down, this record has very few negatives...the only real one is "Tourniquet Man". I mean, it does make you think of def-leppard-cheese-flash-gordon-clad-esquish forgettable mullet-loving trash. And i really hate saying negative things about TMV.

Most interesting track, to me, is "Ilyena". Very different from anything I've heard them do, it exudes some sort of dark, sexually charged seedy feel, whilst thumping in one hell of a drum track (Thomas Pridgen's drum work comes to the fore on this album, really good work)- all whilst an amazing guitar piece wails in the background. Wax and Goliath rock, but seem more familiar.

All of which makes it worth the acclaim. Can't wait for their live performance, only one month to go...

A note, however- if you expect TMV to carry on with the sound they first proposed with Deloused and Frances, you'll be disappointed. It's not in their nature, never will be and I'm glad it's not. This is music in evolution.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Another trip for mind and heart, 28 Jan 2008
By 
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: The Bedlam in Goliath (Audio CD)
TMV's music is always going to be a trip for mind and heart. "The bedlam in Goliath" is no different. As I write this I am listening to TMV's latest offering for the third straight time through. A musical maelstrom, going for a few rounds with your favorite merciless boxer, come up with your own adjectives and superlatives ... but nothing can deny that TMV still have it and are in fact continuing to explore and develop it with their 4th studio release.
The music is violently articulate: all instruments scream at the listener, grabs her attention and shake her head clear of whatever activity she might be wanting to engage in. TMV will not be background music, nor rest easy playing little ditties in the background. They demand, and deserve it is true, to be listened to at centre stage.
Drawing from a rich well-spring of free-jazz, improvisation and heavy prog (think King Crimson's break outs in "21st century", for example, or Van der Graaf Generator's chaos during "Lighthouse Keeper's" or PH's own "Black Room") TMV flaunt their amazing musical prowess, even turning a Syd Barrett song into something from out of his most ambitious punk-psychedelia dream-states.
Listening to this aural banquet I can see closer links emerging between "The bedlam in Goliath" and the raw, uncompromising exploitation of instrumentation, soundscapes, and time signatures one would expect to hear from the 5uu's or even the Thinking Plague and some of their RIO peers, such as Etron Fou Leloublan or even a more manic NeBelNest. These share the same kind of willingness to throw musical forms out of the window in favor of pursuing musical functionality - saying what they want to first and foremost and then allowing the musical forms to blossom around that expressive function. As a hard-core fan of RIO I just really find myself grooving to "The bedlam in Goliath", and as with previous TMV releases, one finds greater levels of intensity nestled within the musical syntax itself ... peel back the layers and discover a universe waiting within. One can select a strand and follow it through the intricate progressions. For example, at first the horns aren't as in your face as in "Amputechture", but that doesn't mean that they are not there - they are, though this time one must peel back the layers of guitar or vox to create the space within which the saxophone becomes more of a lead instrument. And that is the key I think to a lot of RIO and TMV music: each instrument is playing a lead relative to the musical expression, and it is by wrapping itself in the formality of musical expression in a western "rock" idiom that these different leads are gathered together, forming a musically dense and very rich sound-scape.

Many won't like it I am sure. But I am also sure that TMV would probably retort that it wasn't for them anyway. Blow your mind, clean out the cobwebs, buy/borrow/download/rip the album, put on decent headphones on a decent sound system, clear your calendar for 90 minutes, grab a beverage and anything else you might want, turn the lights down and the volume up and let TMV take you on a syncopated trip as only they and very few others can.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Bedlam at work, 25 Jan 2008
By 
Mad Saro (Dublin, Ireland) - See all my reviews
This review is from: The Bedlam in Goliath (Audio CD)
Just purchased The Bedlam in Goliath this morning - new releases come out in Ireland on the Friday before they do in the UK for some reason - and listening to it now, it has a real sense of urgency that i haven't heard on a Mars Volta album since De-Loused. My first impression is, it is a typically brilliant album if you are a fan of The Mars Volta, if not, i don't really think it will convert anyone fast.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best album to date..., 7 April 2008
By 
Mr. R. L. Glover (London) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: The Bedlam in Goliath (Audio CD)
I first heard Mars several years ago after I borrowed 'Deloused..' from a friend - it was amazing. Admittedly, I wanted to listen to them because Flea played bass on that album, but it was a sonic treat and was unlike anything I'd heard. Personally, I didnt enjoy Frances and Amputechture as much - but I will be definately going back and spending more time with them.

Listening to the videos the band put together for the pre-release of Bedlam didnt strike me as particularly grand, but after a bit of time something ravaged my audio tastebuds in a way I haven't experienced since, well, listening to Deloused for the first time I think!!

Since buying the album the day after release, and receiving it the day after (result!), there hasn't been many days passed when I havent listened to this album. I didnt think an album would have such an effect on me (and was secretly dubious and jealous of people who experienced such musical addictions!)

SUMMARY (sorry for the long one, but this album is a modern classic)
even if you have a passing interest in Mars, this album is well worth buying. Check out the videos for the songs on youtube, and spend some time with them...

and oh yeah, Thomas Pridgen is a marvellous addition to the band, Jon Theodore is incredible, but I think Thomas has given the band a lift with his presence (and I think Omar has mentioned this too in an interview)
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An intricate web of musicality, 1 Mar 2008
By 
D. Pieri "jimigherkin" (London, London United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: The Bedlam in Goliath (Audio CD)
I have been listening to this solidly for the last few days as I realised that I still hadn't gotten my head round Amputechture and that's because there's so much to take in. The music of the Mars Volta, in my opinioin, is amazing and this album doesn't fail to provide an exciting experience.
I find it at times it seems like one massive piece of music and at other times like thousands of tiny pieces all meshed together. I'm glad that they went back to a "song" style format for this album however this doesn't mean they slack on the "improv" style stuff, it sounds like they've evolved to be able to make music with energy and power without it sounding like their constraining themselves. "Deloused..." was amazing but listening to it after taking in the new album for a while it feels like rick rubin had too much control (maybe i'm wrong) and that now they've become a fuller more mature band. "Deloused..." sounds to me at the moment too polished, too contrived... and "bedlam..." a more well rounded and free album, and I hope the trend continues. My one criticism is that on a couple of occasions Thomas Pridgen's drumming sounds a bit confused and sloppy, though he does provide some really driving drums, especially at the groovier sections of the album. If you like the Mars Volta you'll love it I reckon, and if you want to broaden your musical horizons, whichever direction you're coming from then I think this album is a good place to go. Laters.
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