Coheed and Cambria Didn't Need Green Beer to Make Houston Smile

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Coheed and Cambria, Glassjaw, I The Mighty, Silver Snakes
Revention Music Center
March 17, 2016

We expect our rock stars to have some ego. We might not want them to go full Kanye West, but you don’t become a golden god by being timid.

There was this moment during Coheed and Cambria’s set that might have been obnoxious in any other setting, but was simply a delight in this one. There’s a part in “Everything Evil” where that goes “And she screamed, ‘Claudio, dear Claudio’”; C&C’s lead singer just happens to be named Claudio. When this part of the song happened, the lights above the stage spelled out his name in time with the song. It’s such a silly thing, a thing that would be obnoxious if most anyone else did it – I would be so annoyed if it happened at a Marilyn Manson show – but the fact that the crowd was loudly singing along while the real Claudio was singing about his fictional-self-insert-messiah character in his science-fiction-space-war musical epic just brought smiles to everyone’s faces.

Smiles were in abundance, and not just because it was the day of green beer. While not everyone in the crowd was a diehard, “knows every single song front to back including the ones on the stolen demos” fan, casual Coheed and Cambria fans don’t seem to exist. Even during the second half of the show, which was heavy on their newer material, the crowd energy was still up. “The Hard Sell” in particular had the crowd going, and “Here to Mars” gave them something close to a power ballad.

But if the energy was up in the second half of the show, it was damn near nuclear for the first half. The band front-loaded the set with crowd favorites, “In Keeping Secrets of Silent Earth: 3,” “Blood Red Summer” and “A Favor House Atlantic” among them. It was quite the singalong; Revention might not have been sold out, but you couldn’t tell from the crowd noise.

Coheed and Cambria are in a pretty good place right now. They’re still putting out interesting, catchy tunes and have a fanbase that seems eager to follow them wherever they want to go. And if Claudio wants to put his name in lights, I’m not going to complain. If I wrote songs as good as “In Keeping Secrets of Silent Earth: 3,” I’d probably do the same. But I’d probably just come off as obnoxious.

Before Coheed took the stage, Glassjaw returned to Houston to a crowd that had clearly missed them. While the crowd singing wasn’t as loud as it would be for the headliner, plenty of people were jazzed to scream out the lyrics to “Ape Dos Mil” and “Tip Your Bartender.” The band sounded really tight; Daryl Palumbo’s voice is holding up nicely, and Justin Beck is a bit of a beast on the guitar.

Maybe it’s just because it’s been so long since they put out a full-length, but I forgot just how sexy — even though their music is heavy — Glassjaw can sound. They’re not Deftones sexy, but they definitely have some songs that you can slip on a make-out mix for the right someone.

So, How Was the Opener?: I The Mighty made a lot of fans last night when their singer revealed that the first tattoo he ever got was Coheed and Cambria-related. Their appearance on this tour makes a lot of sense, because they sounded equally influenced by both of the bands on top of the bill. Pretty enjoyable stuff, and a nice band to get the crowd primed for the rest of the show. I missed Silver Snakes, which is a bummer, because I had an Orange Iguanas joke all lined up.

Personal Bias: When it comes to Coheed and Cambria, my love is like a sine wave. I go through phases where I’m super-into them, and then I take a long break. Repeat as necessary. When it comes to Glassjaw, in honor of a now-defunct Livejournal account I used to have, I own onphonelinesandletterhead.tumblr.com.

The Crowd: Wearing less green that you might have guessed, but blowing a lot of green into the air, if you know what I mean when I make that thinly veiled weed reference.

Overheard In the Crowd: “I’m not even sure I can get this off,” said a man outside the show, trying to remove the chain from his wallet so he could get into the show. Yeah, I’m surprised they still make guys like that too.

Random Notebook Dump: I saw the most tragic thing on the way home from the show. A car about five car lengths ahead of me had a green light and was moving into the intersection as someone deciding he didn’t want to wait on a red light also sped into the intersection. The car in front of me clipped the car that ran the light. What makes this tragic is that the car that had the right of way was an Uber. Those guys made the call to do the right thing to get home safe and still ended up in an accident. Brutal. 

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