Kamelot - Haven
Napalm Records
Progressive Power Metal
13 songs (54:00)
Release year: 2015
Kamelot, Napalm Records
Reviewed by Joel
Album of the month
Fallen Star begins with soft piano and the vocals of Tommy Karevik, and Haven begins where Silverthorn's Continuum left us with ominous closing. Fallen Star is a hugely melodic song with great symphonic accents thrown in from keyboardist Oliver Palotai and guitar work from the band's founder and songwriter, Thomas Youngblood. As always the rhythm section of Casey Grillo on drums, and Sean Tibbets is solid. Insomnia is the first song to feature a VIDEO, and the video is one that has a message and a story(just like Silverthorn, Haven's songs are connected by a story, I will let you figure out for yourself, just part of the fun!). If The Black Halo and Silverthorn's melodies could be combined together, that marriage would have consummated with Insomnia. The keyboard/guitar trade solo is really one of the great highlights on the disc, the mix of Palotai's pitch bends and Youngblood's playing off that, makes it a great Kamelot solo. While we mentioned previous Kamelot releases, Citizen Zero would have found a nice place on Ghost Opera, with its moody stop and go rhythms, and Karevik's vocals ranging from his lowest range to not holding back. Veil Of Elysium you can hear for yourself HERE, with the lyric video. Not quite the speed of classics like Forever or Center Of The Universe, but still just as memorable, with a lead guitar motif that fits the melody of the song. That is something I believe Youngblood does better than most of his contemporaries, finding a way to incorporate his solos with the melodies of the verses. While Song For Joolee was a beautiful yet haunting song on Silverthorn that was well sung by Karevik, Under Grey Skies is that emotional Kamelot song fans have come to expect. The song really gives Karevik the ability to shine, in a way mostly heard by his other(awesome) band, Seventh Wonder. The song is right up there with Wander, Don't You Cry and even Abandoned. With the angelic vocals of Delain's Charlotte Wessels, it's just another layer to what is a beautiful and moving song. When Karevik and Wessels sing in unison, it is one of the spine tingling moments, if a song like this can move you. My Therapy is has a cool guitar intro, which at first takes a little getting used too, before its business as usual. A melodic yet faster song that has one hell of chorus. Youngblood let's loose in the last half of the song, right before one hell of a riff fest. The end of the song repeats the intro, before the chorus is sung one more time, closing out the song.

The symphonic madness returns with the intro of End Of Innonence, that is followed by a uber-melodic song with one of the more majestic choruses heard on the disc(outside of Under Grey Skies). Youngblood really rips loose on the brief but solid guitar solo. The moody intro of Beautiful Apocalypse precedes another Kamelot groove-fest. Another majestic chorus can be heard here, another mind melting guitar solo, and female vocals make this song another highlight among the many heard so far. The dynamic Liar Liar(Wasteland Monarchy) is one moody song, changing melodies, going from soft, to fast in less than a second, one dynamic followed by another(including growling vocals). The second slower song on the disc, Here's To The Fall, starts with Palotai's piano melody, and Karevik singing in more of a baritone range initially. A nice falsetto is reached towards the end of the verse followed by a chorus that sees Karevik taking charge. This song takes the opportunity to share the pure vocals of Karevik, and how great of a singer he is. Revolution has Grillo's drumming taking notice(not that his performance was any less than his consistent body of work). Karevik's vocals reach to the higher end of his range, and those death metal growls return thanks to Alisa White-Gluz(Arch Enemy). There is one part of the song near the end, if you don't believe how good Karevik is, you will definitely know after hearing it.

While to some people, Roy Khan may always be Kamelot, he was not first singer of Kamelot(joining the band for the Siege Perilious cd being his first), nor is he the last(or the last great cd they will ever make). With Karevik, Kamelot has a bright future, one that his voice, solid musicianship from the guys behind him, and Thomas Youngblood's vision, has created one of my top releases of the year so far. Easily the best Kamelot cd since The Black Halo, whether you believe my score or not, believe me the band is on the right track for an even better future.

Killing Songs :
As a whole, ALL!
Joel quoted 93 / 100
Other albums by Kamelot that we have reviewed:
Kamelot - Silverthorn reviewed by Cory and quoted 84 / 100
Kamelot - Poetry for the Poisoned reviewed by Thomas and quoted 86 / 100
Kamelot - Ghost Opera reviewed by Al and quoted 90 / 100
Kamelot - One Cold Winter's Night DVD reviewed by Ben and quoted no quote
Kamelot - The Black Halo reviewed by Marty and quoted 94 / 100
To see all 10 reviews click here
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