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New Album Special For Coheed & Cambria Drummer

of the Oakland Press

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Having its latest album, "Year of the Black Rainbow," debut in the Top 5 of the Billboard 200 was a big deal for both Coheed & Cambria and its drummer, Chris Pennie.

It was the best first-week showing of any of the progressive hard rock band's five albums, though its two "Gold Apollo..." albums both made it to the Top 10. Still, Pennie notes, "We don't technically really get into (high chart positions) that much," Pennie says, "but it's nice to know that still, five albums deep, the band has such a great following."

Pennie has been playing to that following since June of 2007, but "Year of the Black Rainbow" marks the first time he's been able to play on one of Coheed & Cambria's album. A founding member of the Dillinger Escape Plan, he was contractually barred from playing on "Good Apollo...Volume Two," because he was still under contract to another record company. So Pennie bided his time on the road and now says recording with the group was well worth the wait.

"It means a lot, man, to be three years into my life in the band and to finally have something tangible to hold in my hands and say, 'Wow, I'm a part of this," explains Pennie, who acknowledges that the period of recording purgatory was "really kind of a dark time.

"But I'm grateful (the band) really stuck with me and we got to this point where I'm free and clear and onward and upward. Now I can document it and say, 'Hey, this is something I was able to finally, 100 percent be a part of.' It's an amazing feeling, a really special feeling."

Coheed & Cambria, Circa Survive and Torche perform Saturday, May 15, at the Royal Oak Music Theatre, 318 W. Fourth St. Doors open at 7 p.m. The show is sold out. Call 248-399-2980 or visit www.royaloakmusictheatre.com.

Web Site: www.royaloakmusictheatre.com

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