Today Coheed and Cambria released the latest installment of their Amory Wars saga with The Afterman: Descension (Vol. 2) the second part of their double album The Afterman. The first half of the album which was released in October and in one week, Coheed sold nearly 50,000 copies, scoring the album the #5 spot on Billboard. Now as I mentioned this album is part of the Amory Wars saga, but in this review I will not be covering how this album fits into the story line. Instead I will be looking into the spectacular tracks that are featured on this volume.
Hello Apollo, Where should I begin? The Afterman: Descension starts off with the track “Pre-Lethal” which starts off with a nice intro that has a very mystical feel that almost felt like Rush. Then at the 1:15 the song picks up and goes in a heavier direction that sounds a lot like the bastard love child of Genesis and Iron Maiden. The next track, “Key Entity Extraction V: Sentry The Defiant” is my favorite track on the album. It also was the first song I heard when the band released an acoustic demo of the song on YouTube last year. The song which starts out with an acoustic guitar then the whole band kicks in, and you get taken away into the marvelous track. I also love the production on this song as it is very clear, but you can also hear the human imperfections throughout. I also particularly liked the punchy bass tone that is often not found in modern progressive music.
The next song was called “The Hard Sell,” and honestly I can tell you this track was a hard sell. It couldn’t decide what genre it was. Was it Funk? Was it rock? Was it Metal? I honestly could not tell you. But all the wrong doings of “The Hard Sell” were taken away when I heard the next track, “Number City.” It had a really poppy feel to it, but at the same time it wasn’t empty calories like most pop songs. I particularly liked the way the band used programing throughout the track to texture it.
“Gravity’s Union” is the fifth track on the album. At first I thought the song was a demo from a really bad garage band, but then Claudio Sanchez’s voice came in and I knew it was Coheed, and by the chorus I could tell the song was back to traditional production value. “Away We Go” is the next track that I really enjoyed, and let me tell you this reminded me a lot of Asia and 80’s Genisis in the intro and the instrumental breaks. I liked this song a lot and would put it as one of the top songs on the album.
“Iron Fist” kicks off the last third of the record, and let me tell you the title of the song was very deceiving as it was not a heavy song at all, but a folk guitar piece with the band layered on top. Next up came “Dark Side of Me” and this was the track that really sold the album for me, as it is just a pure slice of Coheed and Cambria, and to the fans of the band I think you’ll enhoy this track due to the familiarity of the formatting. This track is followed by the closer, “2’s My Favorite 1” which sounds like it belongs on a Fall Out Boy album at first, but again Claudio’s voice brings it back to Coheed and Cambria territory, but this is not a big grandiose ending I was expecting. I was expecting something like “The Willing Well IV: The Final Cut,” but to this wish there was no answer.
Be sure to check out Coheed and Cambria’s latest installment in their Amory Wars saga with The Afterman: Descension (Vol. 2.) I promise that you will not be disappointed especially with tracks like, “Key Entity Extraction V: Sentry The Defiant” and “Dark Side of Me.” This is the final cut.