Metascore
66

Generally favorable reviews - based on 25 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 14 out of 25
  2. Negative: 1 out of 25
  1. Though 'Teflon' boasts Rush-like guitar thunder and violent lyrics (“Let the wheels burn, let the wheels burn, stack the tires to the neck with the body inside”), the group returns to dark balladry on 'Desperate Graves' and 'Copernicus,' two more highlights from a haunting album full of twilight poetry.
  2. Calling this an unplugged album is useful only in relation to what the group has produced in the past, but what the Mars Volta created on Octahedron will provide them with more range and opportunities in the future.
  3. Guitarist Omar Rodriguez-Lopez and singer Cedric Bixler-Zavala are the creative duo driving the band and once again deliver on a standing promise to blow any mind that is willing to stay open.
  4. The panache of the singing, and the radiant complexity of the music--an achievement shared by Mr. Rodriguez Lopez and a handful of regular collaborators, including the Red Hot Chili Peppers guitarist John Frusciante--drive the album relentlessly forward. And it’s the subtle touches, no less than the sweeping ones, that leave an impression.
  5. it’s an excellent change of pace for the band, and proves that they can indeed write spacey, esoteric mid-tempo songs instead of...well...spacey, esoteric breakneck songs.
  6. Octahedron is most certainly not a wish for Top 40 stardom, but compared to past efforts by this collective, it’s probably the surest means of attracting a larger batch of casual listeners without completely rejecting the heady desires of Mars Volta obsessives.
  7. 80
    This is, however, their most mellow, reflective and tempered release yet. [Sep 2009, p.95]
  8. It shows that for the first time they really can do restraint, without compromising the overall impact of the instances where things are let rip.
  9. 70
    These eight tracks--only one of which stretches past the eight-minute mark!--actually make up the Mars Volta's most consistently compelling slab since 2005's salsafied "Frances the Mute."
  10. Octahedron lacks sparkle enough to raise it above previous creative highs--it’s a recommended affair, at times truly scintillating, but it doesn’t quite deliver to the extent where all caution can be tossed to the breeze.
  11. This might be their ‘reflective’ effort, but it’s classic MV.
  12. We already knew The Mars Volta could shred. Now we know they can slow the pace too and be equally as compelling. [Summer 2009, p.68]
  13. Octahedron isn’t a representation of the best The Mars Volta are capable of, but it is a glimpse into the power they possess when they better harness their capabilities.
  14. The lyrics remain as arcane as ever. Even if you don't totally love the band's new direction, you can bet there's a juicy pretentious concept waiting to be rooted out here.
User Score
7.9

Generally favorable reviews- based on 62 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 22 out of 25
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 25
  3. Negative: 3 out of 25
  1. Sep 6, 2010
    10
    one of the most incredible albums i've ever heard. second only to deloused in pure quality and vision. made all the better because it comesone of the most incredible albums i've ever heard. second only to deloused in pure quality and vision. made all the better because it comes after the massive disappointment that was bedlam in goliath. gone are the terrible, disruptive effects on Cedric's voice. now all that remains is pure musical beauty and genius. just the right balance of slow songs and fast songs. if i can level one complaint at this album, it is that there isn't one standout song that is better than the rest. they are all incredible. buy this now or i'll cut you Full Review »
  2. Dec 4, 2010
    8
    From Their first album to their fourth album, The Mars Volta's sound have always sounded the same. Each with a different style butFrom Their first album to their fourth album, The Mars Volta's sound have always sounded the same. Each with a different style but nevertheless it usually sounds all the same. But this album, Octahedron, The Mars Volta went for a different kind of sound. More acoustic, more slower burning songs, and some really dark lyrics. More darker lyrics than usual. And the verdict is, a very solid album. This album proves that they can do anything musically and it will still sound very good. All In All, the least of any Mars Volta album, but still a very good album that shows that The Mars Volta still has it going for them. B Full Review »
  3. ChrisP
    Jul 21, 2009
    10
    Excellent album that truly shows this band's versatility and ability to scale back without shutting it down. If these boards are Excellent album that truly shows this band's versatility and ability to scale back without shutting it down. If these boards are moderated, why are people allowed to downrate the album with 0s and innane, ridiculous "reviews" such as "Worst album of the year"? Well, eat this 10 rating. Full Review »