User Score
8.4

Universal acclaim- based on 142 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 8 out of 142

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  1. Sense!
    Mar 24, 2008
    8
    Any mars volta album is an album to buy. Recently the only good stuff coming out is f*cking folk music and its soooo booooring! This cd tears apart everything you know about music and mashes it up - you need to repeat it several times -- only old people won't like this music - IT IS FANTASTIC!
  2. AJW.
    Feb 15, 2008
    9
    This is the first Mars Volta album I've heard, and I genuinely thought it was excellent. It's absolutely insane and frenzied, and for that I love it.
  3. DennisO
    Feb 1, 2008
    10
    By far the best album to date. I missed the drum-heaviness on bot Frances and Amputechture. Now it's back with an inhuman effort from Thomas Pridgen. Insanely chatchy. And when they sink into the trademark schizophrenic dissolvement of the music into fractured soundscapes, it actually works, which, in my opinion, it didn't on Amputechture. They toned down on the brass as well, I By far the best album to date. I missed the drum-heaviness on bot Frances and Amputechture. Now it's back with an inhuman effort from Thomas Pridgen. Insanely chatchy. And when they sink into the trademark schizophrenic dissolvement of the music into fractured soundscapes, it actually works, which, in my opinion, it didn't on Amputechture. They toned down on the brass as well, I like that very much. I fail to see how the could have done any better. Expand
  4. FoleyH
    Feb 2, 2008
    10
    LOVE IT!!!! My fav out of all 4 albums. Agadez has got to be one of the best tunes ever created.
  5. MichaelS
    Feb 2, 2008
    10
    This is their best album since Deloused!
  6. mikeh.
    Jan 30, 2008
    10
    This is my favorite Mars Volta album so far. It's ridiculously catchy, heavy, jazzy, and funky all wrapped up in one. screw the critics who praise formulaic radio rock. This album is amazing.
  7. Mislav
    Feb 1, 2008
    9
    If you've ever liked anything by this band, you will like this CD.
  8. WhatWhat
    Feb 12, 2008
    10
    Mycle S. Stop being such an elitist, over-opinionated idiot. Good job on essentially fitting the absolute stereotype of "Radiohead fan" - one who thinks they know what good music is, and places themselves on a pedestal. Either way, the fact is, TMV shouldn't be compared to Radiohead anyway. They are two different bands. Entirely different. I wouldn't want any association between Mycle S. Stop being such an elitist, over-opinionated idiot. Good job on essentially fitting the absolute stereotype of "Radiohead fan" - one who thinks they know what good music is, and places themselves on a pedestal. Either way, the fact is, TMV shouldn't be compared to Radiohead anyway. They are two different bands. Entirely different. I wouldn't want any association between the two - TMV have never once mentioned Radiohead as any form of influence and likewise, so let's keep it that way. PS: Brilliant Album. Expand
  9. MichaelW.
    Feb 1, 2008
    9
    Their best since DeLoused. The culmination of their career thus far. Pure gold for Volta fans.
  10. Briank
    Feb 1, 2008
    10
    Mark G said it best, this album gets better with every listen it is deep, visceral, heavy, and brilliant, I can't stop listening to it. Mars Volta and Omar Rodriguez can do no wrong.
  11. Bob
    Feb 18, 2008
    10
    Amazing album. It started making sense after second listen. Don't judge it after only one listen. Every second is great and that
  12. Pavers
    Feb 5, 2008
    10
    Fantastic album. Takes a few listens to fully appreciate. Though wow... buy this album now, you won't regret it.
  13. SethC
    Feb 2, 2008
    6
    This is apparantly their pop record. almost every song follows verse/chorus/verse/bridge/chorus. for the first time that i've listened to a mars volta record, i was skipping songs on first listen. they sound like a radio metal band now, and not the geniuses who made frances the mute. very, very dissapointing. also, i'd like to tell the drummer: "we get it. you're a This is apparantly their pop record. almost every song follows verse/chorus/verse/bridge/chorus. for the first time that i've listened to a mars volta record, i was skipping songs on first listen. they sound like a radio metal band now, and not the geniuses who made frances the mute. very, very dissapointing. also, i'd like to tell the drummer: "we get it. you're a superhuman drummer. but i'm human, and i don't like constant drumfills. so how about takin a cue from their old drummer, and play with some regard for what the rest of the band is doing." Expand
  14. MycleS.
    Feb 8, 2008
    3
    mediocre album from a band that should have split after deloused. and how Alex w. could compare this to Radiohead is beyond me. Radiohead writes masterful music, full of complex song structures, layers, and meaning. comparing tmv to Radiohead is like comparing finger painting to van gogh.
  15. PerS.
    Feb 8, 2008
    9
    It's funny.. I recall getting a bit worried when I heard through this CD the first couple of times. First of all I felt that the drums were abit too intense, like they were present constantly and going at full speed.. also I didn't like the vocals all that much. And like Amputechture, that the album felt like it had been "built", following a certain recepy. However, just like It's funny.. I recall getting a bit worried when I heard through this CD the first couple of times. First of all I felt that the drums were abit too intense, like they were present constantly and going at full speed.. also I didn't like the vocals all that much. And like Amputechture, that the album felt like it had been "built", following a certain recepy. However, just like with all the earlier records (Except maybe De-Loused, that one was easy to get into) a lot of things are revealed only after you have spent a little time with it. It's certainly a lot more intensive than Frances the Mute or Amputechture all in all, but it's packed with a lot of groovy funk, incredibly explosive solos (be it a bass, saxophone, guitar, drums or vocals) and it's all weaved together in a package of well-written songs. Personally my favorite Mars Volta CD was Frances The Mute, I loved how they took their time on that album and how psychedelic build-ups lasting for 10 minutes finally blasted out, reaching their climax. On this CD it's shorter between the "climaxes" and with exception of one song (11th out of 12) I like the rest extremely well. A solid record, a must-buy for any Mars Volta fan/listener but to me this CD doesn't represent The Mars Volta. For new listeners I would recommend checking out the three previous records before jumping into this one. Expand
  16. JeffP.
    Feb 13, 2008
    8
    This album is actually easier to like on first listen than "In Rainbows", referring to earlier comments on this subject. If you can get by the vocals the music of Mars Volta is always an enlightening experience. Let us not be accused of short memory spans though, "Deloused.." is one of the best albums of the "0" decade.
  17. EvanL.
    Feb 20, 2008
    10
    The new drummer tears it up.
  18. MikeS.
    Mar 3, 2008
    9
    Mars Volta is a love-em-or-hate-em kinda band. The last record, Amputechture, was fairly week in many parts, mostly sounded kinda rushed. This record does sound kinda muddy with the millions of instruments going on, but still pretty solid. They don't intend to sell a million records. So don't expect pop music.
  19. GlenH.
    Mar 8, 2008
    6
    Some very strong musicality on this record, most evident perhaps from TMV's new drummer. Still, I'm unable to see what all the hubub is about. The vocal 'melodies' are contrived, repititious, and boring. Sure the band rocks, but the frontman lets me down. If TMV could take one step back from being so 'experimental' and write something not quite to "far Some very strong musicality on this record, most evident perhaps from TMV's new drummer. Still, I'm unable to see what all the hubub is about. The vocal 'melodies' are contrived, repititious, and boring. Sure the band rocks, but the frontman lets me down. If TMV could take one step back from being so 'experimental' and write something not quite to "far removed" from whatever they're trying so hard to be removed from, I think they would really break into the hearts of so many more music lovers (not necessarily the masses). Expand
  20. EinarJ.
    Apr 10, 2008
    6
    The album isn't bad, and is great music, but, to be frank, it is just not appealing. They seem to be starved of their previous creativity and it's by no means immense. 'Ilyena' is quite amazing though.
  21. JacobS.
    Apr 13, 2008
    10
    I dont even understand how anyone could be so hard against the volta. I think they are getting nothing but better as time goes by. Cedric and Omar really hit the mark, as far as what i was expecting of a new Volta CD. Some people just have a hard time getting into it, but once you look at the complexities, and layers upon layers of great instrumentals and vocal tracks, i dont see how you I dont even understand how anyone could be so hard against the volta. I think they are getting nothing but better as time goes by. Cedric and Omar really hit the mark, as far as what i was expecting of a new Volta CD. Some people just have a hard time getting into it, but once you look at the complexities, and layers upon layers of great instrumentals and vocal tracks, i dont see how you couldnt at least give them credit for doing what they do best; make music that has created a new genre of its own: THE MARS VOLTA. Expand
  22. PAbraham
    Apr 3, 2008
    9
    Mars Volta is a truly original band and this album in my opinion is their best work. The people who give this a low score must really dig unimaginative mainstream rubbish. 9/10 for this one & nothing less !
  23. JohnB.
    Jan 30, 2008
    10
    This album blows me away. The experimentation in song structure and technical precision of Amputechture combine with the fury and intensity of Frances the Mute along with the shortness of songs similar to Deloused in the Comatorium. This isn't to say that the Bedlam in Goliath isn't original because there are plenty of fresh ideas thrown around. It feels as if what hasn't This album blows me away. The experimentation in song structure and technical precision of Amputechture combine with the fury and intensity of Frances the Mute along with the shortness of songs similar to Deloused in the Comatorium. This isn't to say that the Bedlam in Goliath isn't original because there are plenty of fresh ideas thrown around. It feels as if what hasn't been popular in the past has been excluded on this album (Not much ambiance, abrupt endings). I will take the side that this album isn't as accessible as people believed it would be simply because it is far from being identifiable. It demands attention to get into aside from maybe a few of the early songs. The Bedlam in Goliath won't convert people suddenly to this band but never has there been a better time to dive in. I will note briefly that the production of this album is absolutely superb and greatly enhances the sound Omar was going for. It is aggressive, heavy, and ominous. You will feel the very spirit of Goliath grabbing you by the throat and throwing you to the floor. Expand
  24. IsaacA.
    Jan 30, 2008
    3
    This album is just a mess of potentially great, but ultimately wasted, ideas.
  25. MarkG
    Jan 30, 2008
    9
    The reviews remind of me of what rick Rubin said about this band when they made their first album. They will be loved or hated, because only the best bands are capable of inspiring such polar reactions. TBIG is no different. It's an incredible album that some hipster critics are too shallow and small-minded to get their heads around. There are more ideas, ability and passion in the The reviews remind of me of what rick Rubin said about this band when they made their first album. They will be loved or hated, because only the best bands are capable of inspiring such polar reactions. TBIG is no different. It's an incredible album that some hipster critics are too shallow and small-minded to get their heads around. There are more ideas, ability and passion in the second song 'Metatron' than what the majority of what passes for modern rock has conceived in the space of a decade. Expand
  26. Tyler
    Jan 30, 2008
    9
    This album is amazing! Definitely pick this album up if you haven't already, This is mars Volta's 2nd best album next to Francis the Mute.
  27. Pete
    Feb 1, 2008
    7
    I love this band. Frances the Mute and Amputechture are in my favourite 20 albums ever. Let's get one thing straight. These guys can play, and DO play on this album. BUT..I agree with one review that suggested it's time for them to have a break, and not rush their next album. The layers are all there, and there are some cracking songs (Goliath - whose riff is taken from I love this band. Frances the Mute and Amputechture are in my favourite 20 albums ever. Let's get one thing straight. These guys can play, and DO play on this album. BUT..I agree with one review that suggested it's time for them to have a break, and not rush their next album. The layers are all there, and there are some cracking songs (Goliath - whose riff is taken from 'Rapid Fire Tollbooth' on one of Omar's solos), Ourobouros and Soothsayer (these last 2 rated no mentions in any of the reviews), but there's a sense for the first time that it's been done before. And while Cidric's vocals have blended beautifully in the past (Inertiatic ESP, Cassandra Gemini), he's seems to be fighting against it occasionally here. Hate to focus on the negative - it's still a great album - but doesn't add much to the amazing work they've done so far. Expand
  28. HekkV.
    Feb 11, 2008
    8
    I agree is not the best ever album of TMV, and i have started to think that they need a new wave of concepts and musical tricks. However, the album is phenomenal, the low metascore doesn't describe the real value of this band, even in this album.
  29. AidanK
    Feb 16, 2008
    4
    I found this record really disapointing, the tracks seem to sound very similar to one another, which is reall yquite surprising for this band. I think their first two albums are much better,
  30. JerryJ.
    Feb 16, 2008
    9
    Take the time to crack this record. The rewards are great. And terrifying. An adventure to absorb. A triumphant return from the awkwardly a-tonal (and admittedly disappointing) Amputechture. My favorite since Deloused.
  31. HC
    Feb 20, 2008
    4
    Like Muse, you can only take it in bursts. But since the songs are like 7 minutes long, it's almost no good at all.
  32. TimP
    Feb 21, 2008
    8
    It is tough for me to comprehend the inherent backlash of critics against every Mars Volta album. I have not been there from the beginning so I wouldn't call myself a FAN but this album is undeniably great. Weirdness offset by some truly classic hard guitar, drums, and high pitched vocals. Most of the time people on these sites and critics especially truly indulge what is weird, for It is tough for me to comprehend the inherent backlash of critics against every Mars Volta album. I have not been there from the beginning so I wouldn't call myself a FAN but this album is undeniably great. Weirdness offset by some truly classic hard guitar, drums, and high pitched vocals. Most of the time people on these sites and critics especially truly indulge what is weird, for the Volta, I think this (lyrics aside) is one of there more mainstream albums. Not to say that it isn't very unique. Why the hate? Expand
  33. JA
    Feb 27, 2008
    4
    Someone call Rick Ruben to save TMV from Fusion of confusion.
  34. Joe
    Feb 29, 2008
    9
    So much music. More than 1 listen required.
  35. DjntiS
    Feb 6, 2008
    9
    I was a fan on comatorium. Then Frances and Amputechture arrived, and the tunes' quality went down favouring "the concept" which i don't really like. Along came Goliath and made me remember what is it that I like about this band, they've returned to shape and amazed me in the process!
  36. AlexW.
    Feb 6, 2008
    8
    I think that this could have been the best album of the year! far better than any radiohead album.. but.. it sucked well, not sucked but it was the producing and that fucking drummer that let it down! and also this album they are really really out of time! the whole goliath lead guitar riff doesn't fit the time scale and not in a good way! I love TMV and I love this album too - but I I think that this could have been the best album of the year! far better than any radiohead album.. but.. it sucked well, not sucked but it was the producing and that fucking drummer that let it down! and also this album they are really really out of time! the whole goliath lead guitar riff doesn't fit the time scale and not in a good way! I love TMV and I love this album too - but I always thought they were about brilliance not just raw power - some good tracks - but i always skip the first 3 and too all these morons saying frances was better than deloused O_O wtf are you smoking? jeez frances is their worst album! its got like two good parts in it - the widow is boring - and all the rest is filler! radiohead can pull off filler but not the tmv. Expand
  37. NoelW.
    Mar 2, 2008
    8
    Hmmm.... challenging music, complex and far removed from pop structures. But it rewards multiple listens, and then it opened up, suddenly, and I found myself listening to individual songs as if they were entire albums. Don't be fooled by the noisy attack--- this is a clever, thoughtful album.
  38. DaveB.
    Mar 29, 2008
    9
    Awesome. Almost as good as Frances the Mute. These guys are one of the best bands out there - amazing musicians.
  39. DustinC
    Mar 3, 2008
    9
    Just goes to show you that the uber-hip critics at TMT and Pitchfork want nothing more than to take a metaphorical dump on anything that rises from beyond the underground to a more mainstream audience. This album is the culmination of everything the Mars Volta have been doing since their inception. To say its nothing more than endless noodling and prog-rock cliches is a slap in the face Just goes to show you that the uber-hip critics at TMT and Pitchfork want nothing more than to take a metaphorical dump on anything that rises from beyond the underground to a more mainstream audience. This album is the culmination of everything the Mars Volta have been doing since their inception. To say its nothing more than endless noodling and prog-rock cliches is a slap in the face to anyone trying to create good, creative, accessible music. Expand
  40. ShlomiA
    Mar 9, 2008
    9
    It's a great Mars Volta album(its not everyones cup of T :) )
  41. KayY
    Apr 13, 2008
    8
    I love this band for trying not to recreat or repeat what they've already done in the past, or copy the others like all those current "indie" bands out there. They're one of the few bands that constantly change and show me a new world everytime they put a new record. I just can't wait to see what's waiting for us at the end of this roller coaster. A generous applause I love this band for trying not to recreat or repeat what they've already done in the past, or copy the others like all those current "indie" bands out there. They're one of the few bands that constantly change and show me a new world everytime they put a new record. I just can't wait to see what's waiting for us at the end of this roller coaster. A generous applause and 8 for their bravery. Expand
  42. OllieH
    Feb 13, 2008
    5
    I used to be a huge Mars Volta fan. They were building an amazing sound album after album, and I think Amputecture was their best album yet, but this sounds like a pile of sonic mush. None of the songs are memorable at all and they have lost the element of progression and suspense that their previous albums had.
  43. KGFReeze
    Mar 17, 2008
    7
    Way better than Amputechture but still not as worthy as De-Loused. I'm cool with going "out" i just need the playing to have a purpose and sometimes Omar, I'm gonna be honest with ya, you lose me, and it didn't always used to be this way. Hone it in, blow yourself and all of us away. And you don't need 63 records a decade to impress us, you're good, we get it, now Way better than Amputechture but still not as worthy as De-Loused. I'm cool with going "out" i just need the playing to have a purpose and sometimes Omar, I'm gonna be honest with ya, you lose me, and it didn't always used to be this way. Hone it in, blow yourself and all of us away. And you don't need 63 records a decade to impress us, you're good, we get it, now make a FLAWLESS record. The talent's there, stop meandering. Expand
  44. NoelS.
    Mar 28, 2008
    0
    They were cool when they first came out, now they're just kind of trying too hard.
  45. JayL
    Apr 22, 2008
    9
    This album has to be described as incredible. "Prog Rock Cliche" is hardly a fitting title, as some of the negative reviews have donned this. This album is not De-Loused in the Comatorium, and you shouldn't expect it to be. This may be the first album that people who don't enjoy more etheral tones will appreciate, but that doesn't subtract from the funk-rock madness that This album has to be described as incredible. "Prog Rock Cliche" is hardly a fitting title, as some of the negative reviews have donned this. This album is not De-Loused in the Comatorium, and you shouldn't expect it to be. This may be the first album that people who don't enjoy more etheral tones will appreciate, but that doesn't subtract from the funk-rock madness that drives at hundreds of miles per hour thanks to Thomas Prigden's drum talent. Whether or not you've liked Volta in the past, Bedlam is worth a couple of listens. Expand
  46. Sep 6, 2010
    6
    this album had incredible potential. it could have been the best Mars Volta album since Deloused. the combination of Omar's incredible, busy, almost schizophrenic (in a good way) songwriting, and Pridgen's considerable drum talent, this album could have been phenomenal. however, the constant effects on Cedric's voice ruin the entire experience for me. don't get me wrong, i like some of thethis album had incredible potential. it could have been the best Mars Volta album since Deloused. the combination of Omar's incredible, busy, almost schizophrenic (in a good way) songwriting, and Pridgen's considerable drum talent, this album could have been phenomenal. however, the constant effects on Cedric's voice ruin the entire experience for me. don't get me wrong, i like some of the songs. i love Wax Simulacra, Goliath, Things Behind the Sun, and half of Tourniquet Man. However, i will take the beautiful, unadulterated vocals of Octahedron a thousand times over before this. Expand
  47. Sep 10, 2010
    10
    Their hardest album and another classic. Great funk influence on this album and it is really strong from start to finish with the exception of TM. Needs to be listened to several times before making a decision.
  48. Dec 4, 2010
    10
    The Bedlam In Goliath takes me back to The Mars Volta's first album, De-loused In The Comatorium. More rock, less ambient. The opener Aberinkula, right off the bat, just starts out hard. Goliath, Wax Simulacra, and Ilyena are all great tracks. All In All, The Bedlam In Goliath is in my top three favorite Mars Volta albums. A-
  49. j30
    Dec 1, 2011
    9
    The Bedlam In Goliath is Mars Volta's best body of work to date. The songwriting and music is as good as it's ever been. I absolutely love this album.
  50. Nov 21, 2011
    9
    The first few listens might not capture your attention, but after that you won't be able to stop listening to this album. It never quite reaches the brilliance of Frances the mute but it comes damn near to it. Sounding more like dream theater because of the heavier direction of the music, TMV leaves the 'titans of prog' in the dust and never looks back.
  51. Aug 23, 2013
    10
    The Bedlam In Goliath is mental, for that, and many other reasons I love it! The Mars Volta are one of my favourite bands, and this is my favourite album by them. It's the most insane, most funky, and has the least amount of weird noises of any Mars Volta album (except from maybe Noctourniquet... But that's different). This album is consistently brilliant and is ever changing with it'sThe Bedlam In Goliath is mental, for that, and many other reasons I love it! The Mars Volta are one of my favourite bands, and this is my favourite album by them. It's the most insane, most funky, and has the least amount of weird noises of any Mars Volta album (except from maybe Noctourniquet... But that's different). This album is consistently brilliant and is ever changing with it's styles and lyrics. The best songs are Goliath, Metatron, Wax Simulatra and Agadez.
    The Bedlam In Goliath reperesents The Mars Volta at it's very best, with consistently brilliant songs. So I give this album a... 99/100!
    Expand
  52. Oct 22, 2013
    10
    This fourth epic tale from the Mars Volta does not have the sprawling 10 minute plus tracks of it's predessesors... but that's completely acceptable given the presence of tracks like 'Goliath', 'Cavalettas' and 'Metatron' which give no quarter to 4/4. 'Ilyena' paints a soundscape of it's own in 5 minutes, and 'Conjugal Burns' wraps it all up in a red bow. Let's talk about the cover art,This fourth epic tale from the Mars Volta does not have the sprawling 10 minute plus tracks of it's predessesors... but that's completely acceptable given the presence of tracks like 'Goliath', 'Cavalettas' and 'Metatron' which give no quarter to 4/4. 'Ilyena' paints a soundscape of it's own in 5 minutes, and 'Conjugal Burns' wraps it all up in a red bow. Let's talk about the cover art, too. Man! There hasn't been album art this great since ELP's 'Tarkus'. If you happen to come across 'Bedlam' on vinyl, frame that baby! Expand
Metascore
66

Generally favorable reviews - based on 31 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 15 out of 31
  2. Negative: 4 out of 31
  1. This should have been the album where the Mars Volta either wore the formula down to nothing or abruptly turned in a different direction, but instead the band created an album that nearly perfects what they've been working toward.
  2. Most of the time, however, the band makes a righteous racket that straddles the worlds of prog rock, funk, fusion jazz and world music, with Eastern motifs spicing 'Aberinkula' and a bit of cosmic blues making its way into 'Conjugal Burns.'
  3. For the most part, this is the heaviest record that they’ve recorded and the most far-out as well.