Coheed and Cambria's The Second Stage Turbine Blade - Nerd Music
Coheed and Cambria is a Prog-Rock band out of NyackNew York. An EP was released under the band name Shabutie in 1999, but their first studio album under the current band moniker was called “The Second Stage Turbine Blade”, in 2002. Since then, they have released five total albums, several concert DVD’s, and a box set of a 4-day concert, where they played the first four albums in their entirety.
Their first album, the Second Stage Turbine Blade, (technically second in the choronology) has an almost futuristic feel to it. Which is odd, since the next album (which will be discussed in Part 2), has a more modern day feel, and the other 3 albums have a fantasy feel to them. It is a little confusing, but it works.
There are some heavier, and more up-tempo songs on the album like Devil In Jerrsey City and Junesong Provision, but where this album shines is the slower, more depressing songs. Time Consumer is a great lead-in to the album, to get a feel for the tone of the rest. Everything Evil goes up and down with it’s sound, and this is actually the darkest song lyrically on the album (it highlights Josephine’s death: more on that later).
If you enjoy stream-of conscious lyrics, though, then God Send Conspirator is the song for you. It’s also my personal favorite song on this album.
Their music is really great, but the reason why Coheed andCambriashould be considered “Nerdy” is not the music necessarily.
It is The Amory Wars.
The Amory Wars is a science fiction story created by lead singer/guitarist Claudio Sanchez. The main plot of the story deals with Claudio Kilgannon, and his journey to save the universe from Wilhelm Ryan.
It is such an interesting story, being told by Claudio Sanchez, and now Peter David. So far, the story for the first two albums has been done in comic book form, and the most recent album (first chronologically… don’t worry about it) came with a novel. This article (first of five parts) will try to summarize the story of the first album, The Second Stage Turbine Blade.
The story is set on Heaven’s Fence, a collection of 78 planets held together by beams of energy known as the Keywork. There were three protectors of the Keywork (IRO-Bots), known as the KBI: the Knowledge (Cambria’s codename), the Beast (Coheed’s codename), and the Inferno (Jesse’s codename). They were created to take Wilhelm Ryan out of power. The scientist was also blackmailed into creating the Monstar virus, which is used could destroy the Keywork, and thus Heaven’s Fence. It was implanted into Coheed andCambria, and was never intended to be used.
Fast-forward several years: Coheed andCambriaare married, with four children: Josephine, Claudio, Maria, and Matthew. They are visited by Mayo Deftinwolf, who tells them of the Monstar virus inside of them. He says they can be cured, but the virus they passed on to their kids, the Sinstar virus, is not curable. Mayo tells them that the children need to be “taken care of”, before the virus has time to activate, and the children become dangerous to everyone. Coheed andCambriathen kill Maria and Matthew (the two youngest children), by having them drink poison. The effects were too horrible to perform on their other children, so Coheed decided to do it more humanely, and bashes Josephine’s head in with a hammer.
Once three of the four children are dead, Mayo arrives back at the house, to collect C&C. Cambriareceives a psychic flash of Mayo being instructed to kill the children, to get rid of the “Great Power” in the Kilgannon bloodline, by Wilhelm Ryan. The Sinstar virus was a complete lie, and the children did not have to die. Coheed snaps, and his “hidden power” shows itself: blades shoot out of his arm, and kills Mayo’s troops. Before the rest of the troops are killed, C&C are finally subdued, and transported to Mayo’s ship, the Gloria Vel Vessa.
Claudio returns to the house, to a trail of blood. Josephine is dead, but when he hugs her, she is revived, somehow. Ryan and Mayo obviously didn’t get rid of the correct Kilgannon, right? She tells him to run, before dying again. He is immediately attacked, but then becomes intangible, and escapes.
We then learn that C&C were told less than the truth, and that Josephine was created by C&C’s original creators, to be the antidote for the Monstar virus. Now that she is dead, the virus can finally take effect. After we learn this, Coheed wakes, and breaks him andCambriaout of their restraints. They rampage through the Gloria Vel Vessa, trying to take control of the ship. When they get to the bridge, they learn that the ship is on autopilot to Paris, Earth, and can’t be overridden. That is when Jesse (Coheed’s “brother”) shows up, on his ship, the Grail Arbor. C&C are not able to stop the ship’s collision course, so they have to resort to destroy the engine. Before it could be recaptured by Ryan’s regime, Jesse orders the Gloria Vel Vessa shot down.
Claudio escapes on the Guile Greiver Garbage Carrier, to Shylos-10, the “landfill” planet of Heaven’s Fence. When he arrives, he finds a slave camp of sorts, one that Ryan started to exterminate the aliens. He meets a prisoner named Cecil, and is informed of the horrible things that Wilhelm Ryan has been doing there.
Meanwhile, while the Gloria Vel Vessa has crashed, Coheed andCambriasurvived. They are fighting against Admiral Crom (one of Ryan’s lackey’s), and are just about to be beaten, when Jesse jumps into the fight to help. He is reminiscing about the good ol’ days of the KBI, with the three of them reunited, when Crom runs Jesse through with a piece of steel, and knocks C&C uncoinscious.
Once they are captured, Coheed is stung by one of Mayo’s weapons, and he transforms into what he feared: The Monstar. He breaks free, and kills Crom. When he is fully transformed,Cambriastarts to transform into the White Ruineer: The only thing that can kill The Monstar. The Monstar flies to Star VII (another planet in Heaven’s Fence), and destroys the entire planet. The White Ruineer follows closely, and battles The Monstar. She eventually succeeds, and when The Monstar dies, it reverts back to Coheed (who doesn’t remember anything that just happened). Now that her mission is over, The White Ruineer reverts back toCambria, whereupon realizing what she has done, kills herself.
Now that Star VII has dies, the Keywork holding together Heaven’s Fence is interrupted. Sector 12 is affected, sending 9 planets and a dead star floating into space. UponCambria’s death, her powers are released, and reignites the Sun, and pulling those planets into it’s orbit. This becomes our Solar System. The protectors of the Keywork, The Prise, sacrifice themselves to restart the Keywork, and keep the other 69 planets from crashing into one another, and being destroyed.
With Coheed andCambriadead, the Prise gone, and part of Heaven’s Fence broken, Wilhelm Ryan is pleased. He reinstates Mayo Deftinwolf as the Commander of The Red Army, for all of Mayo’s efforts.
At the very end of the story, we see Claudio, still on Shylos-10, living as just another homeless person.
All in all, I think this story starts out fantastic, and only gets better, and crazier, from here.
Stay tuned for Part 2: In Keeping Secrets of Silent Earth 3
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