This is how I’ve described “No World for Tomorrow” to people who have asked me what I thought about the album: if you are a fan of rock music and have never heard Coheed and Cambria before, you will probably think this is one of the best rock albums ever recorded; but if you’ve been a fan of the band from the beginning, like I have been, you may be a bit disappointed.
Don’t get me wrong – this is still a good album – but it is lacking some of the elements that made Coheed and Cambria such a unique and noteworthy band. For instance, with the exception of a few repeated lyrics (“What did I do to deserve this”, etc.), the reincorporation and repetition of past musical motifs is nearly nonexistent on “No World for Tomorrow” (including the little instrumental segment that has appeared in various forms on each of the past albums). Also, this marks the band’s first album that feels more like a collection of songs than an epic, well-conceived chapter of a great saga like their previous efforts. Part of this may have a bit to do with the fact that Claudio co-wrote two of the songs (“The Running Free” and “The Road and the Damned”) with professional songwriters and did not originally intend them to be Coheed and Cambria songs (they were written when the future of the band was uncertain and Claudio began doing other things to keep himself busy in case the band was over). Additionally, whereas in the past, the band has always shown great progress in their sound from one album to the next (for example, better song-writing on “In Keeping Secrets…”; guitar solos on “From Fear through the Eyes of Madness”; etc.), the band doesn’t really do anything new on this album. In a similar vein, nothing really seems fresh about many of the songs on this album – in the past, the band has incorporated their influences flawlessly, paying homage to classic bands like The Police, Pink Floyd, and Led Zeppelin without ever sounding like they are retreading old musical ground, simultaneously forging their own breathtaking sound; on “No World for Tomorrow,” there are many instances where it sounds like they are just trying to fit in with some of these bands on the radio.
On a more positive note, the title track and “The End Complete” are two of the better songs the band has ever done; on both songs, they flawlessly combine catchy melodies, progressive guitar riffs, and heavier elements to make two of the more epic songs in their catalogue. Additionally, Claudio’s voice has clearly gotten even better, and his singing talent really shines on this album. And, for guitar lovers, this album has more solos than all of their previous albums combined, really showcasing Travis and Claudio’s chops.
All in all, it is a solid rock album, and most of the songs would blow away anything else on the radio today while fitting in marvelously alongside classic rock standards. However, if you’ve been a fan of the band for a long time, you may find yourself a bit disappointed with this album because of the things it lacks.