Sound — 9
Sparta has a very unique sound. You can draw similarities from At the Drive-In and The Mars Volta, for obvious reasons, but they still manage to define themselves. I love the guitars in this album and drumming is killer. Their bassist is also very good. The thing that takes away from this album the most, for me, would be the vocals. However they have greatly improved from Wiretap Scars.
Lyrics — 9
I've read some reviews with people dissing the lyrics but I think they're very good. At times the lyrics can be a little to straight forward but their is some goodness to be found. I especially like the lyrics to "End Moraine." I found myself thinking over the lyrics to multiple tracks and was impressed by their depth. As far as vocals go, I've definitely heard better. Give the guy some credit though, he's improved vastly since Wiretap Scars. Not to mention he started out screaming in At the Drive-In.
Overall Impression — 9
If you're going to get a Sparta album, buy Porcelain. The music is good in Wiretap Scars but the vocals are horrible. Porcelain features improved vocals and solid work from all band members. Porcelain truly has something to offer and finds its way back into my CD player semi-frequently. If someone stole this album or I lost it, I probably wouldn't buy it again initially, but after awhile I would probably miss it to much and crack.