The Mars Volta
Que Dios Te Maldiga Mi Corazon


2.2
poor

Review

by Simon K. STAFF
April 22nd, 2023 | 61 replies


Release Date: 04/20/2023 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Why?

2022’s The Mars Volta was a ballsy move. The fervour and reverence for The Mars Volta before their ten-year hiatus was no joke. The passionate fanbase would absorb every sonic crumb given to them by this venerable duo without question, largely overlooking the glaring obviousness the band’s overarching approach to writing music just prior to their hiatus, while disparate and great in execution, had diminished and wasn’t quite the explosive, inimitable peregrination it had once been. For most rational music enthusiasts with a modicum of nous in them, they’d agree it was probably a good time to call it a day when they did; leaving a fantastic body of work behind them and retaining their legacy and dignity before it got ugly. For someone as well-versed in their subversive proclivities as I am, Omar and Cedric’s decision to make their return a furtive scuttle through the door over a cosmic explosion came as little surprise. It’s pretty cliché to say The Mars Volta is their “mature album”, but given their age and what they’d already accomplished as artists thus far, it seemed logical to go down this path and explore pastures previously only dabbled in. That said, while The Mars Volta generally succeeds with its goals, there’s no denying there were some very serious issues with it. One of those issues was despite the solid effort, it didn’t leave the band a plethora of avenues to explore in this vein.

Which brings us on to Que Dios Te Maldiga Mi Corazon, an album nobody asked for. For the life of me, I can’t understand where this decision came from. I think most would agree The Mars Volta isn’t one to raise your heart-rate; it’s an album with a very austere structure to it, surrounded by lavish instrumentation and Cedric’s (mostly) solid vocal performances. What’s most interesting about Que Dios Te Maldiga Mi Corazon is it feels obligated to remove the few bells and whistles from its original counterpart and make an even more subdued record – which, as you can imagine, is the main problem here. If The Mars Volta had the same level of energetic density as Bedlam in Goliath, filled with instrumental chaos and intricate song structures, this ying-yang offering would have been an extremely welcoming addition, serving up new facets to the original recordings. But there’s the problem; the The Mars Volta already feels like an acoustic version to an energetic album we never got.

The results are as you’d imagine them to be. Que Dios Te Maldiga Mi Corazon is an even more solemn rendition to an album that already sounded like a slow, sombre eulogy, stripping away at all of the character from its preceding version to delivery what is a pretty soporific experience. The overall criticism pertaining to last year’s album was that the tracks themselves weren’t very memorable, so it’s very bemusing to see a record cannibalising the source material’s very meager layer of engaging armour, just to reveal the emaciated body we all knew was underneath it. What’s worse is these renditions have a high fidelity for the original compositions, making these new versions all the more redundant. With Que Dios Te Maldiga Mi Corazon you are literally listening to last year’s album again verbatim, only now you’re getting far less bang for your buck. Sure, the thudding double-bass and pattering drum patterns are nice, and the minute differences in Cedric’s approach can be okay at times but ultimately, I always fall back on the same question.

What is the point in this bloody record?

It goes without saying, if you didn’t like The Mars Volta to begin with, don’t bother with Que Dios Te Maldiga Mi Corazon. As a tenuous defender of The Mars Volta, I don’t see a warrant in this version’s existence. There are no differentiations to be made structurally and the omission of the electronic aspects here do severe damage to the album’s ability to captivate. If nothing else, Que Dios Te Maldiga Mi Corazon was a good experiment to prove just how barebones their return LP actually was, but it’s quite surprising Omar and Cedric decided to do this in the first place, all the same. It’s not even that this album is bad – this version is serviceable and if you’re that way inclined, you may enjoy it over The Mars Volta, but to me this album echoes a lot of Hollywood’s creatively bankrupt sensibilities and their penchant for remakes and reboots: to me it’s completely unnecessary. Que Dios Te Maldiga Mi Corazon doesn’t expand on its original ideas, it gives you less – a familiar, now tenebrous and barren wasteland. The bottom line being; when your reimagined version makes an already lethargic album look like an action-packed thrill ride, you know you've got problems.



Recent reviews by this author
Thurnin Útiseta3TEETH EndEx
Thirty Seconds to Mars It's the End of the World But It's a Beautiful DayNathanael Larochette Old Growth
Queens of the Stone Age In Times New Roman...Godflesh Purge
user ratings (50)
2.8
good
other reviews of this album
ShadowOfTheCitadel (4.5)
Bienvenido Luz de Luna...



Comments:Add a Comment 
parksungjoon
April 22nd 2023


46888 Comments


the lars volta

DrGonzo1937
Staff Reviewer
April 22nd 2023


17979 Comments

Album Rating: 2.2

looks like i'm retconning last year's album,but i'm not, i still enjoy that album. this one on the other hand is completely pointless.

insomniac15
Staff Reviewer
April 22nd 2023


6041 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

"What is the point in this bloody record?"



This was my first reaction when I saw the announcement lol, most of these songs don't offer much on the standard edition, agreed. Anyway, nice project, but it would've been more interesting blending some self-titled tracks with older ones in an acoustic form.



I hope they exit this phase soon and move on to more experimental stuff.





Mongi123
April 22nd 2023


21906 Comments


It’s kinda annoying to me when bands decide to come back after many years of being broken up with only a whimper

Pikazilla
April 22nd 2023


27673 Comments


alas that happens to most of em

Odal
Contributing Reviewer
April 22nd 2023


1511 Comments


was scratching my head at this album's announcement and that seems to have been well-founded lol

Mongi123
April 22nd 2023


21906 Comments


It’s like it doesn’t have to be a masterpiece if you come back I understand that. Just put some….oomph into it. Looking at you PT 🥱

Pikazilla
April 22nd 2023


27673 Comments


PT temp reunion felt like a cashgrab to me, because Steve had to cover his life expenses during covid

Mongi123
April 22nd 2023


21906 Comments


Yeah and like it was rushed or something. Slowdive knocked it out of the park with their comeback album. Again, not their best but they clearly poured so much into it I love it.

Pikazilla
April 22nd 2023


27673 Comments


Yeah that slowdive comeback album was sweet

StormChaser
April 22nd 2023


1812 Comments


You guys think PT won't come back with other new stuff? Think that'd be a shame, even though I didn't feel the new album as a whole

bighubbabuddha
April 22nd 2023


215 Comments


I think this and gold original are 5s. Don't understand the hate. This is brilliant pop music with spice and tang!

CugnoBrasso
April 22nd 2023


2055 Comments


I'll be driving 10 hours all the way to Berlin in June just to see them. Hopefully I won't be driving for this.

bigguytoo9
April 22nd 2023


1367 Comments

Album Rating: 1.0

I saw them in 2006 open for RHCP and they just sounded like a wall of noise. It was bloody awful.

Demon of the Fall
April 22nd 2023


30790 Comments


based on gold’s quality and this apparently being a pointless rehash / ‘reimagining’ of that album, this is probably a rock solid piece of utter shite

Purpl3Spartan
April 22nd 2023


7383 Comments


Sounds about right, good review

CugnoBrasso
April 22nd 2023


2055 Comments


Driving 10 hours to witness a wall of noise sounds like something I would enjoy.

pizzamachine
April 22nd 2023


24402 Comments


Love the summary, keep doing your thing!

Demon of the Fall
April 22nd 2023


30790 Comments


Chat Pile vibes

FadedSun
April 22nd 2023


3196 Comments


"Which brings us on to Que Dios Te Maldiga Mi Corazon, an album nobody asked for."

Do people need to ask for an album in order for musicians to make music they want to make?



You have to be logged in to post a comment. Login | Create a Profile





STAFF & CONTRIBUTORS // CONTACT US

Bands: A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z


Site Copyright 2005-2022 Sputnikmusic.com
All Album Reviews Displayed With Permission of Authors | Terms of Use | Privacy Policy