Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Kamelot: Silverthorn

It is always tough to tell what a band is going to do after a particularly noteworthy member leaves the band.  A band risks alienating their fanbase if they do not find an adequate replacement.  Such was the situation that Kamelot found themselves in after longtime vocalist Roy Khan left the group.  Khan was not the band's original singer, but he had quickly become one of the most distinctive features in the band.  I probably would not have cared much for the band without Khan's crooning vocals.

As it is, Kamelot did not have a whole lot to worry about.  New singer Tommy Karevik sounds a lot like Roy Khan.  In fact, if I did not know that Kamelot had a new singer, I probably never would have guessed this was not Khan.  Maybe that means I do not pay that much attention, or maybe it is because Karevik is doing a damn good job trying to sound like Khan.

Musically, the last couple of Kamelot albums have been a little bit lackluster.  Kamelot has never really been the most aggressive American power metal band.  In fact their sound is far closer to the Scandinavian power metal bands like Sonata Arctica, Stratovarius, and the other so-called "flower" metal bands.  The music is dark and romantic, instead of powerful and aggressive.  This trend has gone a little far in Kamelot's recent output to the point that it barely seems metallic at all.  But that is where this one differs a little bit.  Granted it is not a complete change in the opposite direction.  This band is never going to sound like Grave Digger or Hibria, but the more aggressive riffing style is back and a sound similar to their earlier works is present.

The songs are once again quite catchy.  That is something that Kamelot has always brought to the table.  And yes the dark, romantic vibe is still present.  Kamelot is one of the few bands that my wife approves of and even really likes.  She usually requests me to bring Kamelot on any roadtrips.  That will not change with this new album.  If you have enjoyed Kamelot in the past, you will likely enjoy this too.  Some bands do not change that drastically.

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