Wednesday, 24 February 2016

Live review: Coheed & Cambria, House of Blues, Feb. 22, 2016

Coheed & Cambria, by Ben Stas for the Boston Globe

"Coheed & Cambria, unmasked but still heroic at House of Blues"
Boston Globe, February 24, 2016

Long months after I spoke with Claudio Sanchez about The Color Before the Sun, the revealing newest album from prog-punk quartet Coheed & Cambria, for the Rolling Stone website last September, I enjoyed seeing the band play live at the House of Blues on Monday night. Last time I caught Coheed was on the second night of the "Neverender" run at Terminal 5 in New York City -- Oct. 23, 2008, the evening devoted to In Keeping Secrets of Silent Earth: 3 -- when erstwhile Dillinger Escape Plan drummer Chris Pennie was part of the lineup. This, then, was my chance to see firsthand how much better Josh Eppard's lanky punk-rock clobber suits the band than did Pennie's drum-clinic finesse.

It was nice to hear fans singing along on favorite older songs, but for me the most powerful sequence of the show comprised four consecutive songs from the new album: the set-closing "Atlas," "The Audience," and "Peace to the Mountain," and, opening the encore, "You Got Spirit, Kid."

Also, Glassjaw: This is one of those instances where I'm forced to admit that I somehow completely missed a band of phenomenal import during its initial splash. Not sure why that would have been, but yeah, I wasn't dialed in when Daryl Palumbo & Co. were inventing "post-hardcore" or "screamo" or whatever, and then promptly leaving it behind for something deep, rich, and strange. Palumbo was on sharp form Monday, but the revelations were guitarist Justin Beck -- listening to his buzz, whine, shriek, and warble, I kept wondering why I hadn't heard as much about this guy as I had about Tom Morello -- and the ridiculously lithe yet powerful rhythm section of bassist Travis Sykes and drummer Chad Hasty. Seriously, one heck of a pleased to meet you.

Hung up at the office, I missed the opening band, Silver Snakes -- something I always regret. I did catch a fair chunk of the set by I the Mighty: a solid outing from a younger group that just seemed really, really happy to be there.

Coheed & Cambria setlist, Feb. 22:

In Keeping Secrets of Silent Earth: 3
Blood Red Summer
Everything Evil
Here to Mars
Key Entity Extraction V: Sentry the Defiant
A Favor House Atlantic
The Hard Sell
No World for Tomorrow
The Audience
Peace to the Mountain

You Got Spirit, Kid
The Running Free
The Welcome Home

(Trainspotter postscript: For the second show, on Tuesday, Feb. 23, "Devil in Jersey City" replaced "Everything Evil"; "Eraser" was slipped in between "A Favor House Atlantic" and "The Hard Sell"; and "Atlas" was omitted.)

Glassjaw, by Steve Smith on Instagram

Glassjaw setlist, Feb. 22:

Tip Your Bartender
Mu Empire
Pink Roses
Ape Dos Mil
The Gillette Cavalcade of Sports
Jesus Glue
New White Extremity
Two Tabs of Mescaline

(The set was unchanged the next night.)

Original Content: Live review: Coheed & Cambria, House of Blues, Feb. 22, 2016

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