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Coheed & Cambria
- The Afterman: Ascension

2012 version of Coheed & Cambria is taut and efficient, stripping away some of the over the top excess for a lean, intriguing listen.

Danielle O'Donohue

Oct 9th 2012 | Label: Co-Operative Music
There are two ways to listen to US heavy rockers Coheed & Cambria. The simple way is to enjoy the music, revelling in the epic riffage and chuckling at the absurdity of singing along to lines like, “man your battle stations”. The other option involves countless hours spent studying lyrics, reading frontman Claudio Sanchez's The Amory Wars comic books and conjuring up in your head a world more complex than a Game Of Thrones family tree.

The band's latest album, The Afterman: Ascension is the first of two concept albums (but when is a Coheed album not?) about a character from The Amory Wars, Sirius Amory. But thankfully this album doesn't require a degree in Sanchez's elaborate story to be enjoyed. Clocking in at just under 40 minutes, the band's shortest studio album by almost half an hour makes this the freshest Coheed album in a while. Key Entity Extraction III Vic The Butcher is about as vital as this band gets, with the guitars wailing away underneath Sanchez's distinctive voice. There's quieter moments here that hit the mark like The Afterman, with its quiet strings slowly weaving a beguiling melody under Josh Eppard's shuddering drum beat and Subtraction, a definite change of pace for the band, but no less effective.

Though there's nothing as immediate as Welcome Home or In Keeping Secrets Of Silent Earth: 3 on this album, the 2012 version of Coheed & Cambria is taut and efficient, stripping away some of the over the top excess for a lean, intriguing listen.

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