I remember growing up remembering people referring to Queensryche as a “thinking man’s metal band”. If that is the case, then Kamelot is “a thinking doctorate’s metal band”, with their combination of introspective lyrics, larger than life arrangements, and a vocalist that can hit multiple octaves, while causing you to think. This is Kamelot, as they have released their latest offering entitled “The Shadow Theory” via Napalm Records.
Out of Tampa, Florida, Kamelot is composed of Tommy Karevik on vocals, Thomas Youngblood on guitars, Oliver Palotai on keyboards, Sean Tibbetts on bass, and Johan Nunez on drums. In this offering, they have recruited Lauren Hart of Once Human for guest vocals as well as Jennifer Haben of Beyond The Black for guest vocals.
The Shadow Theory is what longtime fans of Kamelot would expect and that is lush arrangements, dynamic vocals, musicianship that is intricate yet powerful, and diversity in the arrangements. Kamelot seems to mix power metal, progressive metal with the sensitivity and intricate touch of world music to create this offering. The opening track entitled “The Mission” allows Kamelot to set the anticipatory stage for the rest of the album before they kick into “Phantom Divine”, which features Lauren Hart of Once Human on vocals. The chorus is thundering, the rhythm section is dynamic as this track showcases Kamelot in their heavier moments. On a personal note, I would’ve liked to have seen Lauren Hart with more of a presence in this track to make this song feel heavier and more urgent, however it’s a solid track, that’s just my personal taste in this one.
“Ravenlight” and “Amnesiac” focuses the band less on classical themes in the music and more on Kamelot being so heavy that one will need a crane to lift its heaviness. The chorus in “Amnesiac” and the themes behind the song are memorable as song is definitely a stunning highlight in the album. The chorus in the outro in “Burns To Embrace” is simply a joy to listen to as well as it allows the listener to unpack a layer of who Kamelot is and who they have evolved to.
The keyboards in “Vespertine(My Crimson Bride)” really displays the classical elements along with the classical tinged guitar solo offered in the instrumental break of the album. In terms of the vocals, I want to see Tommy Karevik take that next step in terms of his vocal prowess, we already know that he possesses a lot of talent in his pipes, I just want to see him push the envelope more in these songs.
In terms of Kamelot, fans will enjoy this evolution of a band as they have seemed to adopt more world and a touch of pop sensibilities to incorporate with their sonic and epic arrangements, as is quite evident in the track “The Proud And The Broken”. Fans will need to open their mind to the continued evolutionary process of Kamelot as they will still embrace their fantasy-based lyrics with depictions of philosophy and folklore. For the solid arrangement, Madness To Creation rates this a 7 out of 10 stars, as we want them to take that next step towards being elite instead of playing it too safe, with that said, it’s still a pretty powerful record. Here is the track listing below.
- The Mission
- Phantom Divine featuring Lauren Hart
- Burns To Embrace
- In Twilight Hours featuring Jennifer Haben
- Kevlar Skin
- MindFall Remedy featuring Lauren Hart
- Stories Unheard
- Vespertine(My Crimson Bride)
- The Proud And The Broken
- Ministrium (Shadow Key)
Kamelot will be on tour in North America with special guests Delain and Battle Beast. Check out the tour dates below!
16.04.18 US – Louisville, KY / Mercury Ballroom
17.04.18 US – Charlotte, NC / Fillmore Underground
18.04.18 US – Silver Spring, MD / The Fillmore
20.04.18 US – New York, NY / Irving Plaza
21.04.18 US – Worcester, MA / New England Metal And Hardcore Festival
22.04.18 US – Montréal, QC / CA Métropolis
23.04.18 US – Toronto, ON / CA The Opera House
25.04.18 US – Albany, NY / Upstate Concert Hall
26.04.18 US – Pittsburgh, PA / Cargenie Concert Hall
27.04.18 US – Chicago, IL / Concord Music Hall
28.04.18 US – Minneapolis, MN / The Cabooze
29.04.18 US – Des Moines, IA / Wooly’s
01.05.18 US – Denver, CO / Ogden Theatre
02.05.18 US – Salt Lake City, UT / The Complex
04.05.18 US – San José, CA / City National Civic
05.05.18 US – Anaheim, CA / The Grove
06.05.18 US – Phoenix, AZ / Marquee Theatre
08.05.18 US – Dallas, TX / House of Blues
09.05.18 US – Houston, TX / House of Blues
11.05.18 US – Atlanta, GA / Center Stage Theater
12.05.18 US – Orlando, FL / House of Blues
13.05.18 US – Fort Lauderdale, FL / Revolution Live
While Kamelot will be making their festival appearances, they will be touring Europe this fall with Visions Of Atlantis. Check out the tour dates below.
12.09.18 DE – Cologne / Live Music Hall*
14.09.18 NL – Tilburg / 013
15.09.18 FR – Paris / Elysee Montmartre
16.09.18 DE – Aschaffenburg / Colos-Saal*
18.09.18 DE – Berlin / Astra*
20.09.18 SE – Gothenburg / Pustervik
21.09.18 SE – Malmö / KB
22.09.18 NO – Oslo / Sentrum Scene
23.09.18 SE – Stockholm / Fryshuset Klubben
25.09.18 FI – Helsinki / Nosturi
26.09.18 FI – Tampere / Pakkahuone
28.09.18 DE – Hamburg / Markthalle*
29.09.18 DE – Munich / Backstage
30.09.18 CH – Pratteln / Z7*
02.10.18 DE – Mannheim / MS Connexion Complex*
04.10.18 FR – Toulouse / Metronum
05.10.18 ES – Madrid / La Riviera
06.10.18 ES – Barcelona / Razzmatazz 2
07.10.18 FR – Lyon / CCO Villeurbanne
09.10.18 HU – Budapest / Barba Negra
10.10.18 CZ – Prague / Akropolis
12.10.18 UK – London / KOKO
Fans can find Kamelot at the following locations: