Drawing from frontman Claudio Sanchez’s sci-fi comic book series, the COHEED AND CAMBRIA jams planet rock.
With popular interest growing in the book-to-series fantasy genre (Game of Thrones, American Gods, Twilight), music has been no slouch. New York–based rock outfit Coheed and Cambria have been putting out concept music based on comic series for more than a decade, and fans anticipating their next installment have to wait no longer: The second part of The Afterman hits this month.
The first part, The Afterman: Ascension (released October 2012), was the band’s sixth studio album and the prequel to the story line of the comic book series The Amory Wars, by Coheed frontman Claudio Sanchez. The series follows the life and times of Sirius Amory, a cosmonaut presumed dead by his wife after the crash of his ship. Ascension focuses on the protagonist’s rise into space, where he gets caught in a gaseous ether and discovers the Keywork, a valuable energy source.
The new release, The Afterman: Descension, picks up where Ascension left off. “Descension documents Sirius’s return planet-side,” says Sanchez. “He must not only figure out how to share his discovery with the world, but more importantly, how to pick up the pieces with a wife who has already buried him and moved on.” These consecutive albums offer listeners a sonic adventure that takes them through Amory’s ascent to space and his descent back to earth. The symbolic return trip is “his fall—in every way possible,” says Sanchez.
As the story has progressed, so has Coheed and Cambria’s sound. “We are constantly making progress, challenging ourselves and growing,” says Sanchez. “What makes Coheed the band that it is, is the variation in our music.” The band has been consistently classified as prog rock with heavy references to Rush, but Sanchez says the band can’t be categorized: “Our music is [also] compared to Michael Jackson, or R&B, or pop just as much, if not more, than progressive.”
Ascension made its debut at number five in Billboard’s Top 200, and Descension may make an even bigger splash. “I am continually surprised at the level in which this band and The Amory Wars continues to grow,” says Sanchez. “We put so much work into the story and the comics, and try to give our fans as much as they give us.”
For devotees of the albums and comic book series, the next logical step is a film—and fans can rejoice that it’s on its way; Evil Ink Comics announced that Mark Wahlberg will serve as producer. We can’t wait to see how the story unfolds.