Flea played bass on the Mars Volta’s best album – but you probably never noticed

Given the mercurial nature of Cedric Bixler-Zavala and Omar Rodríguez-López’s musical predilections, nouveau prog darlings the Mars Volta have covered a lot of sonic ground since their 2001 inception – sometimes to their fans’ chagrin. But few would argue that their Rick Rubin-produced 2003 debut, De-Loused in the Comatoriumis their finest work, and one of the best rock albums of the 2000s.

Rodríguez-López’s wiry guitar playing and Jon Theodore’s furious kit workouts remain touchpoints for what made the record such a masterwork, but the bass playing – and, indeed, the bass player – are often overlooked. Which is particularly surprising when you consider that bassist is Flea.

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