I’ve been a fan of Coheed and Cambria for nearly 15 years now, drawn in first by their gorgeous guitar work and then hooked by the overarching speculative fiction storyline that has underpinned all of their albums except one. The band’s focus on fiction (and on their one non-concept outing, personal struggles like family, homesickness, etc.) has kept them relatively apolitical, though frontman Claudio Sanchez and his wife did release a standalone EP last year with proceeds benefiting Unidos Por Puerto Rico in the wake of Irma and Maria.
(I should also note, for the sake of full disclosure, that there are serious issues with earlier chapters of Coheed’s story, which contain some pretty violent misogyny…fortunately, this seems to have vanished–at least in my perception–as the band has grown older and wiser.)
But in listening to their new track The Dark Sentencer, released last week as the precursor to a new album scheduled to drop later this year, I can’t help but read some of the lyrics as barely-concealed shots at our current commander-in-chief, his administration, his followers, and perhaps even at those of us who didn’t see Trump’s America coming. To wit:
Here, dig me a grave
And toss in the lives that you can’t be bothered to save
With their blood on your hands
You enjoy the sun while you shit in the purest sand
Kiss your lover with that filthy mouth you fucking monster
Here as evil now gropes
It’s caught us off guard with its hand reaching for our throats
And from the bridge:
I fear we’ve got all we had wanted
Close your eyes and believe it didn’t happen
Now shut your mouth beyond your lies
The world knows to stay away from you
Lines like “Here where the light only dies to remember / In a place where the blind truly can see” further paint a picture of a broken, post-truth America. And perhaps most significantly, on the fictional end of things, this song is set in a privatized, for-profit galactic prison for the galaxy’s worst criminals.
So I’m curious how the rest of you would read this, Waypoint fam. (I’d be lying if I said I didn’t also want to know how many of you are fellow fans.) Chime in, y’all!