Sound — 10
Prog-rockers Coheed and Cambria return with the final chapter of their musical science fiction saga. The album opens with dual, epic-sounding pieces, with the title track being the more rock-sounding. "No World for Tomorrow" is straight out of Atreyu's book, circa 2006. The following "The Hound (Of Blood and Rank)" is a keyboard-heavy song that sounds like an electronica Guns'N'Roses. "Feathers" sounds like it could be penned by Fall Out Boy. "Hound" and "Feathers" both have hair-metal solos. When you get to "The Running Free", you're in for a treat. The song, originally written for the Transformers movie, is a high-octane blast of otherworldly, Chinese-response vocals, and U2-like sounds. "Mother Superior" provides a superb acoustic break. From there, the album gets somewhat confusing. While the pair of "Justice in Murder" and "Radio Bye Bye" fit together, they are adjacent; "The Fall of House Atlantic", a one-minute, dramatic instrumental with choir vocals intervenes. By the time the album concludes, you find yourself at the end of an outer-space soundtrack. For those unfamiliar with the band, Coheed has a concept behind the songs, penned in comic books.
Lyrics — 9
The lyrics illustrate frontman Claudio Sanchez's story. Descriptive and unrealistic, the songs represent chapters in the story. You might want to search the story before listening. The lyrics are good, and Sanchez's voice is remarkable. The words fit in well with the music. In "The Running Free", you can imagine Sanchez as the top-hat-bearing, surrealistic master of fate, with marionette and cane in hand. The circus ride through Mars and into the neverending galaxies does not disappoint.
Overall Impression — 10
I've made artist comparisons. My personal favorite tracks are "No World for Tomorrow", "The Hound (Of Blood and Rank)", "Feathers", "The Running Free", and "Mother Superior". I would definitely buy this again. It's a great album. There aren't too many disappointing moments, not a note out of pitch. It's the album currently haunting my brand-new Walkman.