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Cedric Bixler-Zavala

More bad news, friends. In a move that may or may not shock prog fans everywhere, it has come to light through the band’s frontman and co-founder Cedric Bizler-Zavala that long-established progressive rock band The Mars Volta‘s Q4 2012 announcement that they are on hiatus has effectively evolved into a full split – for less than amicable reasons.

Spread across several tweets through Bixler-Zavala’s Twitter page, the erstwhile frontman blamed long-time musical partner and guitarist Omar Rodriguez-Lopez’s unwillingness to tour their most recent album Noctourniquet as a deciding factor, as well as his involvement with a new project called Bosnian Rainbows, and so has called time on his own involvement with the band. Rodriguez-Lopez has always had his fingers in many pies, but this seems like a disruptive and final straw for the other members of the band that has, at its core, been going for around twelve years.

It was understood that recent times had meant a more democratic process was underpinning The Mars Volta’s moves – with OR-L being, for the most part, the band’s main composer and conductor of sorts. Their sophomore album Frances The Mute was famously written by Omar with the parts all being relayed to each member separately for recording in isolation from the others – essentially, only he knew what it would end up sounding like.

To say the least, Cedric seems mightily disgruntled, despite denying any anger. As one particularly concise message put it:

[quote-symbol symbol1]Am I supposed to do be some progressive house wife that’s cool with watching their partner go fuck other bands?

Running with the housewife metaphor I guess you could now say he’s “The Widow“…

Cedric goes on to apologise to the fans, who he feels deserved to know what was going on, and has encouraged people to ask him for his own story in person should they wish.

What this means for the reformed At The Drive-In, the pair’s seminal post-hardcore band whose split catalysed The Mars Volta’s formation, we don’t know – but considering it was a certain amount of inter-band animosity that caused that hiatus, I think it could be reasoned that we may be without any more shows from them as well.

Sad times, but as the man said, it was fun while it lasted.

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