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Coheed and Cambria 

No World for Tomorrow

There's so much about Coheed and Cambria's work that cries out for ridicule: the '70s-art-rock-derived instrumental wankery, or its skyscraping, get-your-Geddy-on vocals. Somehow, though, the act's latest release works in spite of itself. No World for Tomorrow represents the final chapter (although not the final installment) of "The Armory Wars," the epic tale of Claudio Kilgannon, who seeks to avenge the deaths of his parents, named (wait for it) Coheed and Cambria. Deep? Not so much. Fortunately, lyrics such as "Well, baby, be my lover/Go ahead and pull that trigger," from "Gravemakers and Gunslingers," are effective whether they advance the plot or not. Moreover, the technical skill at play throughout the aggressive title track and the closing suite dubbed "The End Complete" outstrips just about anything else on the emo landscape. Granted, the concluding "On the Brink" is so melodramatic that it verges on the laughable — at least until a middle passage that's explosive enough to justify forgiving plenty of prior sins.

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More by Michael Roberts

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