Tue. Jan 18th, 2022

Perhaps the most defining characteristic of Coheed & Cambria is the voice of lead vocalist and guitarist, Claudio Sanchez, a voice which can reach notes only dreamt of by female singers as showcased in such hits as “A Favor House of Atlantic” and “The Suffering.” However, his skills as a musician and the talent of his band often are ignored because of Claudio’s wail, and it is unfortunate because the band is the best they’ve ever been on the new record “No World For Tomorrow,” the fourth record in their discography.The record is the most ambitious and emotional album the band has written to date. “No World For Tomorrow” is the conclusion of a complicated and confusing concept revolving around the son of the two characters, Coheed and Cambria. The band began to experiment with time-changes, song structure, and fusing their various influences into their music on their two previous records “In Keeping Secrets of Silent Earth: 3” and “Good Apollo, I’m Burning Star IV, Volume One: From Fear Through The Eyes of Madness” and continues the trend on this record. Songs such as “No World For Tomorrow,” and particularly “The End Complete,” showcase the band’s knowledge for the intricacies of music theory and their ear as they transition flawlessly through various time changes.

The record also draws influences from the blues and jazz in songs such as “The Hound (Of Blood and Rank)” and “On The Brink.” Classic rock influences can be heard in songs “Justice in Murder” and the hit-you-in-the-face “Gravemakers and Gunslingers.”

While the influences are clear, it is the band’s musicianship which makes this album as enjoyable as it is. Sanchez and Travis Stever, guitarist, are as cohesive as they’ve ever been as they trade off licks, riffs, and solos. Bassist Michael Todd continues to provide the continuous rhythm. Taylor Hawkins tracked the drums for the album in lieu of Josh Eppard, who had left the band before the band entered the studio and he fits in nicely, literally “filling” in this band.

If there’s a particular strength of this band, it is their ability craft a song whether it be the riff-heavy “Justice in Murder” or the stunning “Mother Superior” (a seven-minute reflection and homage) or the poppy songs “Feathers” and “Radio Bye Bye.” The guitars and Claudio’s voice drive this band. There are more guitar solos on this record than the previous records. The solos do not distract the listener because they are woven so naturally into the song that it doesn’t take the attention away from the rest of the band. The solos are woven melodiously into the songs, and even harmonize on tracks like “Gravemakers and Gunslingers.”

Perhaps the emotion of this album is as high as it is because of the struggles the band endured. Two members left (Mic Todd later returned), Sanchez dealt with personal issues and it looked like the band might have not survived. Taylor Hawkins, of the Foo Fighters, came in as their studio drummer because they had not yet found a full-time replacement for departed Josh Eppard.

Sanchez’s wails are more than a man singing about the fates of his characters. There is genuine emotion in the croons and wails of Sanchez as he reflects and searches for light in an often dark world. The record is the band rediscovering themselves and showing the music world just how far they’ve come since their 2002 debut.

In short, “No World For Tomorrow” is a record which will please the loyal fan base as well as someone who isn’t familiar with the band. The record’s full of hooks, blazing solos, excellent musicianship, and great vocals. Coheed & Cambria have once again topped themselves for they have crafted a truly special record.

Chris Monigle is a third-year student majoring in Literature. He can be reached at CM660983@wcupa.edu.

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