In anticipation of their upcoming October release, VAXIS – ACT I: THE UNHEAVENLY CREATURES, New York's Coheed & Cambria packed Berkeley CA's 8,500-cap Greek Theatre on Thursday night. Taking the stage during the intro of "The Dark Sentencer"—their first track off the new record—the remainder of the set primarily focused on Coheed's first four albums, leaving fans shocked, and impressed, to hear so many classics like "In Keeping Secrets of Silent Earth: 3," "Blood Red Summer," "A Favor House Atlantic," and deeper cuts like "The Devil In Jersey City" and "The Crowing." Fans' surprise continued to grow as Claudio Sanchez and company played a few tracks from Year of the Black Rainbow, an album nearly forgotten. Thanks to a silly Berkeley curfew, the show promptly ended on "Welcome Home," leaving the audience wondering which Afterman song would play the role of encore... only to be disappointed when the lights came up and the house music began to ooze from the speakers.
Shout out to Sanchez for having the courage to put down his axe and play a different style of frontman during "Unheavenly Creatures", which helped this reviewer understand why they decided to tour with an act like Taking Back Sunday, who have microphone whips and frontman dance moves on lock.
Also, Berkeley-- if you want your favorite bands to play in your city, maybe don't continually toss projectiles on stage while they're performing? Oh, and while you're at it, how about knowing the group's newest material? Huge missed opportunity for the crowd to chant along to "The Dark Sentencer" and make Coheed feel welcome. Sanchez took it in stride, though, as he rocked the stage throughout and even caught a flying glow stick with one hand during the set-- but as a fan of the band, I was embarrassed, if only for a moment, to call this place home.
Photo Credit: @rapphotocompany