Not to be confused with the Mars Volta (who quite likely took their name from the same Portuguese phrase), Volta do Mar are part of the same Chicago experimental rock scene that's spawned bands as varied as Don Caballero and the Coctails. The tricky instrumental math rock of 03>98 has much more in common with the former, mixed with the polyrhythmic fearlessness of Tortoise. Much of the album, particularly the frenzied "Sports Conquest," is a showcase for drummer Tony Ceraoulo, who will never go for a simple snare hit if there's room for wanton abuse of a splash cymbal. His unapologetic overplaying isn't really a detriment, however, since the rest of the lineup (a pair of bassists and a single guitarist) prefer tasteful rhythmic and melodic development that has as much in common with mid-period King Crimson as it does the hipper names in post-rock. Refined occasionally to the point of bloodless, but with enough musical depth to skate past the occasional dull patches, this is a cerebral but entertaining listen.
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AllMusic Review by Stewart Mason