Kamelot
Poetry for the Poisoned


3.0
good

Review

by Matthijs van der Lee USER (219 Reviews)
September 7th, 2010 | 87 replies | 25,645 views


Release Date: 2010 | Tracklist

Review Summary: An unfortunate but seemingly invitable step down from Kamelot's recent work, Poetry for the Poisoned is a slight dissapointment.

13 of 15 thought this review was well written

One of the most distinct bands in the power metal genre, Kamelot have had a rather consistent career going for them since the 90’s, especially since their defining and lasting vocalist (as well as main selling point) Roy Khan joined for third studio album Siége Perilous. Encompassing elements of symphonic and progressive metal, their signature sound took some time to develop fully, but with the three-streak of 2002’s Karma, 2003’s Epica and 2005’s The Black Halo, the latter two being a two-album concept, Kamelot showed that they one of the most endearing metal acts of the modern era. 2007’s The Ghost Opera took a darker path, and although quite good, did not quite live up to the expectations of the three albums that preceded it.

The band’s new release Poetry for the Poisoned doesn’t have to be a major comeback for these reasons, but nevertheless, Kamelot’s fans will have had high hopes for the album. Unfortunately, it is not as good as their prime releases, and even a tiny step down from The Ghost Opera. In its 50 running minutes, Poetry doesn’t ever provide truly superb moments that made us appreciate the band so much in the first place, and for that, it feels far too bland for their doing.

A notable thing about Kamelot’s ninth release is that it contains quite a few guest performances. The band are known for including female vocals in their material, and Simone Simons (vocalist for Dutch symphonic metallers Epica), previously performing on The Haunting (Somewhere in Time), returns here for House on a Hill, while Amanda Somerville provides vocals for the title track. These women’s appearances are no surprise, but Savatage’s Jon Oliva and Ozzy Osbourne’s new guitarist Gus G. are. Unfortunately, they hardly make a dent. The Zodiac can actually be pretty annoying because of Oliva’s vocals, and G.’s flashy solo adds little to Hunter’s Season.

Don’t get the wrong impression, because Poetry is a good album. Good, not great. The issue at hand is simply that Kamelot feel too restrained. This release isn’t exactly a departure from their usual style, which is part of the reason why it’s so unsurprising, but most importantly, it lacks energy. The feeling of disappointment already sinks in with opener The Great Pandemonium, which rehashes the dark growls on the classic March of Mephisto (then done by Dimmu Borgir’s Shagrath, now by the less brutal Björn Strid). It’s a very well done track, including a great guitar solo, and easily one of the album’s best moments, but the 'wow'-factor still remains absent, as does it for the remainder of the 14 tracks.

Things finally picks up a bit with the 9-minute title track (divided in four parts), that is more satisfying than most of the songs, but nevertheless not quite up to par with Kamelot’s more accomplished epics such as Elizabeth and Memento Mori. It’s the perfect example of what the album really fails to accomplish altogether: living up to the band’s reputation. Consistently good, but never really great, Kamelot’s ninth studio album seems an inevitable point in their career: they’ve hit the peak of their creativity, and this is its backlash. There's a good chance they'll pick themselves up next time, but for the moment, Poetry for the Poisoned is a slightly disappointing release that we’ll have to be satisfied with for the moment, until Kamelot is ready to amaze us again.



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Comments:Add a Comment 
Nagrarok
September 7th 2010



7946 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

I hereby continue my effort to cover more new releases.

Willie
Moderator
September 7th 2010



15774 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Good review. I've only heard The Fourth Legacy and the opening track was cool, but the rest of it was whatever.

Digging: Teramaze - Esoteric Symbolism

Nagrarok
September 7th 2010



7946 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Karma, Epica and The Black Halo are all much better than that album, so if you're ever interested in Kamelot again...

Willie
Moderator
September 7th 2010



15774 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Well, I like the style of music they played on The Fourth Legacy so I guess I could give them another chance.

Crysis
Staff Reviewer
September 7th 2010



15976 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Agreed 100% with this review. It's decent, but it didn't blow me away or anything.

Digging: Tiamat - Wildhoney

Nagrarok
September 7th 2010



7946 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Well, I like the style of music they played on The Fourth Legacy so I guess I could give them another chance.


In that case you definitely should.

Oh, and this isn't actually out in Europe or America yet, but it was released almost a week ago in Japan already. Just making sure you mods won't delete this.

Thank you Crysis.

Jethro42
September 7th 2010



12028 Comments


Karma, Epica and The Black Halo are all much better than that album

I own these 3, dunno about the rest. Very good review bud

Willie
Moderator
September 7th 2010



15774 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

So, I'm assuming that's where you bought your copy from? ;)

Nagrarok
September 7th 2010



7946 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

So, I'm assuming that's where you bought your copy from?


Well yes, of course. You can't expect me to download something, now are you?

Voivod
Staff Reviewer
September 7th 2010



5610 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Can somebody review a record by listening to legitimately bought mp3 files?

good review, as per usual Nagrarok.

The Black Halo was awesome.

Digging: Mekong Delta - In A Mirror Darkly

PayneTiger777
September 7th 2010



4363 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

This makes me sad. I was psyched for this album too. The album cover is pretty cool though.

bornmanh
September 7th 2010



64 Comments


I thought this was going to be awesome, looks like Ill have to scream myself to sleep again tonight!

bornmanh
September 7th 2010



64 Comments


Just took this off my wish list, sigh

EVedder27
September 7th 2010



6088 Comments


I hereby continue my effort to cover more new releases.

good things


Shimbodono
September 7th 2010



8 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I disagree with the rating, but the review was good.

Also, I thought the best part of this album was definitely Part 2 of the title track. Shit was epic.

Nagrarok
September 7th 2010



7946 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Any reviews I can expect to see by you Mike?

@Shimbo: You make like this a bit better, but as you can read, I agree the title track is one of the better moments.

Jethro42
September 7th 2010



12028 Comments


so Vedder, welcome back bro.
sup Nag, buddy

Jethro42
September 7th 2010



12028 Comments


oh and Nag, haven't you seen my first comment here above: I said that I own the trio (Karma, Epica and The Black Halo)..but I dunno anything about the rest. Do I miss something

LepreCon
September 7th 2010



3544 Comments


I was sorta expecting as much but I'm still pumped for this. Pos'd

OvrotLivesAgain
September 7th 2010



1501 Comments


Fuck, I was hoping this album would be amazing.
Good review though. Pos'd



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