Released at a point when emo, screamo and pop punk were having an inexplicable revival in the early aughts, upstate New York’s Coheed and Cambria managed to sneak into the party when no one was watching the door, playing an impressive mix of prog rock and metal with a subtle inclusion of pop.
The band drew influences and comparisons to everyone from At the Drive In to Rush (the comparisons between Coheed’s Claudio Sanchez and Rush’s Geddy Lee were inevitable given the high register both employ). And while they had very few obvious musical peers at the time, their broad appeal led to tours with everyone from Linkin Park to Slipknot.
Their sophomore effort, In Keeping Secrets of Silent Earth: 3, pretentious title aside, was a fantastic surge of originality into a music scene that was swamped with carbon copies of mediocre bands. Re-released on vinyl, thanks to a partnership with Equal Vision, Columbia and Legacy, the album is getting a second chance to impress. And it stands up remarkably well, 11 years later. The release is timed with the band’s North American tour where they will be playing the LP in its entirety.
There are a couple of regretful spots on the album, in particular the tired and unnecessary use of screamed background vocals on a few songs (a dreadful trend at the time that has thankfully, mostly slipped away) that threated to sink otherwise great songs like “Three Evils.” The album’s biggest single at the time, “A Favor House Atlantic,” is still the strongest track here, but the album as a whole, had plenty of other songs that are nearly as powerful.
Though vinyl re-release can seem like little more than a poor excuse to shake a little more cash out of fans, In Keeping Secrets… is a made for record players, that rare album that needs to be listened to from start to finish, in the right sequence, to really be enjoyed.
Coheed and Cambria – In Keeping Secrets of Silent Earth: 3/2 LPs/12 tracks/Equal Vision, Columbia and Legacy/2014