Metro Theatre, Sydney – 20th April 2013
By Charlie Howard
With an intensely devoted following and a virtuosity largely unparalleled in today’s rock ‘n’ roll spectrum, Coheed and Cambria are legitimate world-beaters at their craft. The New York quartet approach songwriting with an unfaltering eye for concept and detail that is cat nip for fans intent on rummaging deep, while the tasteful riffs and melodies provide cue for even the most casual hard-rock dilettante to jump on board. Twelve years into their career, they have also emerged as a wildly prolific bunch with tonight’s sold-out show at Sydney’s Metro Theatre arriving hot on the heels of their latest observation, The Afterman: Descension.
Always ones to keep you guessing, Coheed and Cambria offset their knack for invention with an unmistakeable retro flair, bringing to mind the spirit of progressive rock luminaries like Rush and Yes. The fans tonight seemed mostly fresh-faced, and it was gratifying to note that classic rock’s celebrated calling cards were not lost on the new guard. Though I felt acutely aware of my age, it was an endearing atmosphere to behold as the sense of anticipation began to loom.
Stepping into their coveted role as Coheed’s long-time touring cohorts, Circa Survive kicked things off in dynamic style; their faculty for elaborate fretwork and soaring vocals elevating songs to intrepid heights. They commanded the stage admirably and were more than equal to the lofty expectations of an already-packed house.
After the requisite pause, pundits beelined into place for the main event. Collecting on stage and finding immediate ascendancy with the rousing ‘No World for Tomorrow’, Coheed and Cambria’s signifiers – adept playing, precise musicianship and crystalline sounds – were in full blazing swing. Frontman Claudio Sanchez had a magnetic allure from the onset; his trademark plume of hair lending a mad scientist’s air to his fluid guitar-work and acrobatic vocals. Three tracks in, the band raised the stakes even further, treating the crowd to a rollicking rendition of the spirited ‘Goodnight, Fair Lady’. Coheed and Cambria had well and truly taken up residence for the evening.
As the night wound on, it became clear that, despite the esoteric nature of the lyrics, Coheed and Cambria deal in predominantly joyous and uplifting tones. As such, tonight was a celebration of rock music’s ability to unite, alleviate and pile on the good times. Midway through the set, before launching into ‘The Afterman’, Claudio Sanchez took a moment to applaud the crowd’s loyalty and commitment over the years, an indication that behind the band’s perfectionist exterior were grounded individuals who felt comfortable and at home with their audience.
Departing the stage after the set proper, the band afforded the crowd enough time to settle into a chant before re-emerging for two final songs. And as much of the audience would have hoped, the tense and climactic fan favourite ‘Welcome Home’ was the band’s parting gift and the overall high point of the show. Leaving the venue and reflecting on some of the evening’s more dazzling moments, it was hard not to feel inspired by the energy and harmony just witnessed.
Moshcam filmed the full show – stay tuned for premiere info coming soon!
Artists in this post
Hot-wiring hard rock with high concepts, New York prog powerhouse Coheed And Cambria have carved out a sound that’s as epic as it is ambitious. Over the course of seven mighty albums, this four-man crew have blasted off on their own course, fueled on razor-sharp riffs, thunderous rock theatre and sci-fi mythology (that’s evolved into
Circa Survive is an American rock band from the Philadelphia suburb of Doylestown, formed in 2004. The band consists of vocalist Anthony Green (the former singer of Saosin) and members of the now-defunct bands This Day Forward and Taken . Their first album, Juturna, was released on April 9, 2005, by Equal Vision Records, and