The follow up to Second Stage Turbine Blade, and second chapter of Claudio Sanchez's storyline is a puzzling effort. In Keeping Secrets of Silent Earth:3 is a stripped down, straight forward rocking record with one helluva kick. The chronological progression from their previous effort, it is a continuation of the concept theme, and it is no less strange. The lyrics are mystic, and encrypted, partly because the coresponding novel to the saga is still withheld to Sanchez's mind. If you concentrate on the messages of the songs, you will find yourself confused. All the names and people kicked around, whom Sanchez swears all have a part to play in the saga, are overwhelming. Imagine walking into a movie an hour late,and trying to catch up with the plot, and you will get the feel of this record. This is illustrated in the intro track, 'A Ring In Return.' A phone rings, and footsteps are followed a voice saying, "Hello Apollo, Where Shall I Begin?" According to Sanchez, Apollo is a dog. Go Figure.
Looking past these eyebrow raisers is easy, however. In Keeping Secrets of Silent Earth:3 musically has all the elements of a successful indie record. Cool guitar play that switches back and forth from poppy to harcore, layered elements without sounding overproduced,and up tempo driving drums are all present. And, of course, theres the vocals. Sanchez's falsetto trips sound much more comfortable, and natural then they did on SSTB. I'm a big fan of the combination of high vocals with darker melodies and lyrics. The unavoidable converse in becoming more polished vocally, is also there though. There is no 'Delirium Trigger' on this record. The points of uncontrollable raw emotion are gone.
There are some delicious songs on here despite the minute change in style. The Velorium Camper Trilogy (3 consective songs that are supposedly related) are special, especially the third, 'The Velorium Camper III: Al The Killer.' It combines the old Coheed style with some garage rock elements that combine for a very good sound for this band. 'The Crowing' kicks ass as well. But watch out! Number 6, 'Blood Red Summer' is a dancer. I foresee this track being unpopular with the hardcore crowd. It reminds me of Jimmy Eat World's 'The Authority Song.' Ewww.
Overall, Coheed and Cambria have reason to be proud of this record. Though the record does fall short of the masterpiece it is evident they were trying to create, they deserve to be praised for this exciting effort. They lack the emotion that would be necessary to carry 'The Light and The Glass' through the entire almost ten minutes. The records clocked at about 70 minutes in total, a song or two too long for my tastes. But what they miss in that, they make up for in originality. Coheed and Cambria proved with this record why they are the most interesting band in Rock and Roll. Top Track - Three Evils (Embodied in Love and Shadow)