Coheed and Cambria - In Keeping Secrets of Silent Earth: 3 (Cover Artwork)

Coheed and Cambria

In Keeping Secrets of Silent Earth: 3 (2003)

Equal Vision

The return of the ring. It seems the question posed by the last album and many a t-shirt has been answered, "when it rings, will you answer?"

Because someone does, in fact, answer, and unleashes an opening track that causes you to turn up the volume instinctually. Your ears are primed and senses are ready to receive the highly anticipated In Keeping Secrets of Silent Earth:3.

Coheed and Cambria exploded onto the scene almost two years ago, with an album that caused many people a lot of confusion. You listened to it all the way through, and then sat there dumbstruck. What the fudge was that? After a second listen you were so excited about this record. You held it in your little hands and told all your friends and couldn't believe how many people this seemingly-too-intelligent band would touch. The Second Stage Turbine Blade set a dangerous precendent for the world of underground music, "you better fucking bring it".

Now we finally have the follow-up. The third volume in what is said to be a four-volume series detailing the adventures of Coheed and Cambria, and the Monstar, and Snyper, and apparently the band themselves. This is all sprung from the mind of nerdy Claudio Sanchez, and his supposed graphic novel. Well where is the graphic novel! After listening to this album, the lyrics, the themes brought back, you have to wonder if this isn't some fucked up rock opera the band wrote, illustrated, filmed, and set up in a basement somewhere in the TriState area, just waiting for the time to dole out a little more to the rabid fanbase.

The album itself, however, maybe doesn't seem as cool as the concept behind it. After an opening track akin to an overture before an aria, slow, droll notes ooze out of the quiet. The first song is not a banger, like expected. That's cool, they will rock you later. Claudio's voice has never sounded more interesting, whether he's singing, near-screaming, "coo-coo-cachoo"ing or "wa-ho"ing. The album slows down, picks up, and slows down again and again, like a movie soundtrack. When its on, its on, but when its off you just sit there wondering what the fuck are they doing. (Drugs probably...if there ever was a reason to start smoking weed, its this album.) Half the songs turn into super-long tech rock jams that shoot all over the place and then just end into some ambient noise or scream. Songs like the three part "Velorium Camper" just confuse and entertain you. The album very much is a mish-mash, and while solid, is maybe a little too concepty to make an impact. But just when you think that, a song like "A Favor House Atlantic" rocks your nuts off and leaves you thinking whether or not the band has gone pop. You know they haven't gone pop cos you just listened to the final "Camper" song " Al the Killer", and that shit ain't gonna be on no TRL. You're confused. Satisfied, but confuse. And PS- "The Crowing" is the standout track by far.

So it rang, we answered, and its going to take some digesting to accept fully. Nothing will ever top that time you listened to Turbine Blade and finally GOT it, and loved it and worshiped it and sang along in the car to it. Seeing some of these songs live on the "screamo" (dumbest word/"genre" EVER) monsters of rock tour with the "Th" sound bands (that's Thrice and Thursday is you live under a rock) will probably help Coheed's cause, but if you're a fan, just remember that feeling you had when you first heard them. You didn't know what to think. And it was good.