Sparta - Wiretap Scars (Cover Artwork)


Sparta: Wiretap ScarsWiretap Scars (2002)
Universal Music Group

Reviewer Rating: 4.5
User Rating:

Contributed by: YellowTrashYellowTrash
(others by this writer | submit your own)

For some reason, the EP "Austere" gave me a feeling a space, like soaring through canyons. This album is no exception. The CD starts out with "Cut Your Ribbin", which is a strong introduction track. Its complex rhythm and guitars give a feel of things to come. Things then relax a bit in the middl.
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For some reason, the EP "Austere" gave me a feeling a space, like soaring through canyons. This album is no exception.

The CD starts out with "Cut Your Ribbin", which is a strong introduction track. Its complex rhythm and guitars give a feel of things to come. Things then relax a bit in the middle of the album with San Cosm and Light Burns Clear. The last seems to have a mellow energy. Jim's vocals gives a soft tone which adds a nice effect to his screaming. The guitars' reverb and the synth contribute to the spacey feeling. Overall, this album gave a positive blunt-agression that isn't too present lately in records.

If you are a fan of At the Drive-In (I'd like to note that three members are present in this album), pick this up and give it a listen.


People who liked this also liked:
Refused - The Shape of Punk to ComeMinor Threat - Complete DiscographyBrand New - Deja EntenduSaves the Day - Stay What You AreOperation Ivy - Operation IvyAlkaline Trio - GoddamnitWeezer - PinkertonAt The Drive-In - Relationship Of CommandThe Get Up Kids - Something To Write Home AboutBad Religion - Suffer

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Fine Print: The following comments are owned by whoever posted them. We are not respon sible for them in any way. Seriously.
renaldo69 (June 8, 2015)


superskabro (May 29, 2007)

maybe this person listened to "Wiretap Scars" in the backgound while he studied, because he doesn't seem to have REALLY listened to the album at all. He could have at least b.s.ed and given us two paragraphs.

Anonymous (May 25, 2006)

nice fuckin review. i really feel like i know a lot about the album. so detailed. you really described it to perfection.

nosedive (March 16, 2006)

simply amazing.

hXc007 (September 6, 2005)

this album is a really good album. i really enjoyed the way the harder stuff was fused w/ the softer to make a really good fleshed out sound. i think they are way better than mars volta, even though i like mars volta too. pick this album up if you are a fan of ATDI or good music itself. 5/5

Anonymous (December 19, 2004)

i love sparta, there vision is unique and doesnt fall in with the "typical" catagory of music. i loved sparta the first time i heard them. i have all there cd's and cant wait until new ones come out. KEEP UP THE EXCELLENT WORK!

Anonymous (February 20, 2004)

Local Felons fag, just shut the fuck up. You're a dumbass.

Analog_Boy (August 6, 2003)

The review is kinda short, not enough detail but I would say that it is deserving of a 9. This cd rocks. Sparta rocks, although I like the mars volta better. 'Assemble the Empire' is probably my favourite off the cd, along with 'cut your ribbon'.

mintymoose (January 19, 2003)

i bought this album a few days back..and the minute i put my headphones on..i was in musical euphoria..
i had downloaded most of the songs off Kazaa...but listening to the whole album was totally different..un-cut and better sounds..ah...thy felt true bliss..
the song Cataract is by far one of my favorites and Assemble The Empire..the intro to it is simply amazofantastic!
thy love Sparta :)
i should write a better review on it..hmm

punkboy_1 (December 10, 2002)

i had heard of these guys a while back, but when i saw them playing cut your ribbon on conan o brien i just about shit my pants. the next day i bought it and must say it is pretty good, it spans fromhard rock to soft beautiful songs. impressive.

CaptainCrunch (December 7, 2002)

These Guys opened for JEW in Grand Rapids. I was totally blown away. It was such a powerful performance. I missed them when they came back to Detroit, unfortunately. This CD does not do their live show justice, even though it is one of the best CDs of the year. They are THAT good live.

-Captain Crunch

ProjectAudicide (October 17, 2002)

Mars Volta is better.

Anonymous (September 17, 2002)

Definitely one of the best albums this year. And probably the best album of all albums reviewed on this site. It makes me happy. and I'm not sad anymore over the break-up of at the drive-in. This album is more dynamic than anything atdi could produce.

InHope01 (September 15, 2002)

This is a great album. It starts off kinda heavier then juxtaposes between heavy and doft quite nicely. The one thing that confuses me about all of this is why everyone compares Sparta to At The Drive In. They are NOT At The Drive In even though they are a piece of what ATDI was. I think Sparta has the potential to be a far better band than ATDI, and this album proves it. But still I am not trying to compare the two. I am just glad that Sparta put together this album because it is a new sound...and i think it is the way most mainstream music is going. In 5 years Sparta is going to be huge...at least I think so. I can't wait to catch them live with Cave In. Now for the Mars Volta....I have yet to get any of their music but I will shortly.


Anonymous (September 11, 2002)

it makes me happy to see that everyone else thought this cd kicks mother fuckin ass as well. Sparta rules.

Anonymous (September 3, 2002)

mail fucking order man

Anonymous (September 3, 2002)

Well, since you bought it at target, I'll assume that you live in America. By living in America, the chances of you being a bad person are very great. So probably, yes.

Anonymous (August 31, 2002)

I bought this album at target for $5.99. Does that make me a bad person?

yellowtrash (August 31, 2002)

I think everyone should shut up and listen to this record. :)

FYI: I am listening to it right now.

Anonymous (August 30, 2002)

Wow, there was an abnormal amount of stupid commentary under this Sparta review!
The funniest was the guy talking about kids wearing taking back sunday shirts and doing something metaphysical. That was an in depth theory/ prediction of it's own. I'm blown away with his superior intelligence level over all the 10th graders with crumbs on their shirts. He must read a lot .

tgarn (August 29, 2002)

relationship of command is no in casino out

Anonymous (August 29, 2002)

"Wiretap Scars" is no "Relationship of Command" ... -nt-

- ben

Anonymous (August 29, 2002)

I'm so punk that I am anti-punk; which makes me even more punk, which strengthens my anti-punk posturing all the while feeding the fire of my punkness. I'm so punk turned anti-punk that I can lay my anti-punk punk philosophies of "Fuck Everything, Punk or Not" out with a real zest for sounding disinterested in something that I truly shouldn't be paying attention to in the first place if I'm so anti-punk punk that all I should be doing is staring at my CRASS and Aus-Rotten records and pondering when the fuck I'll be promoted to Assistant Merchandising Associate at Hot Topic.

Anonymous (August 29, 2002)

the last comment was me.


Anonymous (August 29, 2002)

Goodness, look at the lot of you.

I can just imagine you, hunched over delightfully hacking away at your keyboard, clawing Chips Ahoy crumbs off your Taking Back Sunday t-shirt, eager to express your watered-down idealism of the metaphysical connection between music and commerce.


There are kids on this page that talk like they got game... and they don't. Y'all sound like idiots with your 10th grade theories on how Best Buy sells thier wares or how indie record stores are so much better... blah, blah.

Isn't it a given? Why argue a moot point?

4131 (August 29, 2002)

By the way, the new QOTSA is fucking amazing. My favorite album released so far this year, punk or not.


WeekendSellout (August 29, 2002)

I got this CD for about 8 bucks at Zia Records I think, but I would have paid a lot more for it. I really like this a lot...not as good as At the Drive In, but about as good as we'll ever get I suppose.

ETx310 (August 29, 2002)

I bought this album at an indy store, it was $10. I think it's a good strategy to start off these new releases at lower prices. I imagine that a lot of people wouldn't be buying this if it wasn't so cheap.

I like this album.

waste_elite (August 29, 2002)

my local indie store is awesome. most of the cd's there are about 10-12 bucks. occassionally you find a cd for cheaper or higher. plus they sell used cd's which are dirt cheap. my local, corporate music store sells cd's for like fuckin 17-18 bucks. that's just ridiculous. indie stores always have a wider selection of "underground" music anyways, and if you can't find what you're looking for, you can just order it through them (usually).

moral of the story: indie stores rule

Anonymous (August 28, 2002)

My brother works at an indie record store and this album was like $13/14 dollars. Sorry, I love that store I buy 80% of my music there, but read below, money matters.

- Scott

Anonymous (August 28, 2002)

I'm sure if you guys bothered to check your local indie store they'd be selling it for the same price. I picked up the new Queens Of The Stone Age record yesterday at an indie store. I saw it advertised in Best Buy for $6.99 but decided to check my favorite store ever first. They had it for the same price. They do this to compete with the chains but most people don't even notice. We're screwed.

yellowtrash (August 28, 2002)

Oh man. My review was short as hell.

A-Season-of-Shrubs (August 28, 2002)

Hey, mother fuckin biatch below me, he's saying that in the future all stores will be mega corporations and that all indy stores will then be gone, if we only buy cheap CD's from them. They will then be able to charge however much they want, and since making money is the point, charging a lot would be my guess as to what they do. So quit being a complete fuckshit.

Anonymous (August 28, 2002)

to the guy who was talking about buying cd's at best buy and said "You don't pay now, but you will in the future."

how the fuck is that possible? i mean really thats all i would like to know. are they going to send me personally a bill for every cd that i only paid $10 instead of $17 on. $7 a piece, maybe?

shut the fuck up.

Anonymous (August 28, 2002)

all these guys are so over rated. yeah, atdi was good, but they were not the second coming for christ sakes.
the people that should get all the credit are the press agents hired to promote these guys. they are the real heros. they could make my grandmother a rock star.

Anonymous (August 28, 2002)

i know best buy sells their cds cheap, but its not a good idea. Their one of the reasons their are very few indy records stores. You don't pay now, but you will in the future. support indy stores and if their are none do mailorder.

Anonymous (August 28, 2002)

This truly is a great album. However, I don't really like Cut Your Ribbon all that much. I think it's one of the weaker songs on the album.

Anonymous (August 28, 2002)

Boston Music Guy,

We all mention the price of the CD because of this one very simple thought...Money matters when you're a college student...trust me!

Plus people are more encourage to buy something when it's dirt cheap. As opposed to reading this review and thinking "Well, it sounds good, but I don't know if I'll like it and I don't want to hand over $17 for something I'll listen to twice."

A main point of a review is to sell the album, and Best Buy owe's us a few bucks for the work we're doing.

- Scott

lockdown59 (August 27, 2002)

Boston Music Guy-

I belive I got this CD at Best Buy for $10. It was alittle while ago, o i don't really rmember. I got to Best Buy for most of my music purchases. Their prices are very resonable. I hav never paid more than $15 for a CD.

Anonymous (August 27, 2002)

Does everyone have to comment on how cheap this cd is? Being cheap doesnt make a cd good. Shit, I paid $4.99 for the Sum 41 cd and all of you hate it. I liked At the Drive In but this band does nothing for me. I think the thing I liked about At the Drive in was that they were very different in a time when everything surrounded rap rock. They were on a major label and decided to do soemthing very different and very experimental. The first time I had ever heard of them they opened for Gang Starr and Rage Against the Machine... not many shows are that kick ass. This is good for what it is... but its just doesnt hold the same feeling that ATDI did... for me anyway. -BostonMusicGuy

Bryne (August 27, 2002)

I really like this album. It was cheap, the songs are rockin', it's really a win-win situation. "Air" is an awesome song. As far as major labels go, Dreamworks definitely doesn't suck.

Anonymous (August 27, 2002)

I don't know what it is about this CD. Is it the fact I got it for only $6? Could it be the awesome art work? Perhaps the intensity of Jim's vocals? Maybe the talent of the entire band as muscians/lyricists?

I think a mixture of it all.

I bought this album expecting At The Drive-In, seeing as 3 of the 4 were from ATDI, and that trio were the main guys writing the lyrics over at the ATDI camp. My expecations were everything that I wanted though. ATDI could have saved rock 'n roll (maybe?) had they not disbanded, but they did, and before I even got into them. I bought Relationship For Command also for a very cheap price of $6 and I didn't get into it till they were no longer. I don't know about you guys but that seems to happen to me way to much (ie. Op. Ivy, Slapstick, Jawbreaker, Sublime, etc).

Well back to my review.

I basically sprinted to my car after I purchased this and popped it right into my CD player after a struggle with the wrapping. My expections were met, or so I thought...

Wiretap Scars picked up right were ATDI left off with Cut Your Ribbon. A soft intro, followed by an orgasim of music; incredible vocals and explosive musician ship. Sparta isn't stupid though, they're educated men now and knew that playing exactly like ATDI wouldn't get them far, the rest of the album plays out much like the Austere EP. The songs are softer and not as fast as Cut Your Ribbon, but don't count them out yet. The follow up tracks Air & Mye suck you into the world of Sparta and take you on a musical rollercoaster ride with all sorts of twists and loops. However, an album like this is near impossible to sum up with few words, almost every song has it's own distinct sound to it when you look deep enough. It flows though, which is what makes this record so incredible. Feeling almost every emotion while listening to it, until you are left exhausted and eager for more when the incredibly written Assemble The Empire lets you go just as quickly as Cut Your Ribbon pulled you in.

There's no need to buy new albums by The Hives, The Vines, The Strokes, The White Stripes, Raveanettes, Sleater-Kinney, or Weezer, Sparta's Wiretap Scars is the only Rock you'll need for awhile...I know, as it hasn't left one of my five CD players since I've bought it.

- Scott

ambiotical_sophisticrat (August 27, 2002)

starts off good but then its downhill

Anonymous (August 27, 2002)

I didnt like it as much as I thought, I have to say I like mars volta a little more.

I like Sparta's live show better.

RobC93 (August 27, 2002)

ya, i mean some of these bands on majors is actually pretty cool. I got this for 6 bucks, SoCo, Midtown, JEW was all under 10 bucks.

I hope the new AFI is this cheap, that would be great.

Anonymous (August 27, 2002)

Yeah, I agree. I'm glad this review was brief and ignored all the hype that's surrounded this band and its predecessors. It really is a solid album. And because they're on Dreamworks, it's dirt fucking cheap.

maverick (August 27, 2002)

Kind of a short review, but I honestly don't have much more to say about this CD, besides there's no reason why you *shouldn't* buy it [shit, I got it for 6 bucks at Target].

"Mye" is in my top 5 songs of all time right now.


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