Kamelot
Silverthorn


4.0
excellent

Review

by eyesofapocalypse USER (14 Reviews)
November 5th, 2012 | 14 replies | 1,762 views


Release Date: 2012 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Kamelot returns with a new vocalist and a return to their greatest era - with splendid results.

4 of 4 thought this review was well written

Kamelot is one of the top dogs in symphonic power metal, huh? I'd say they're there right along side Nightwish as THE symphonic power band - and like Nightwish, they'd turned away from their power metal roots in favor of a catchier, more symphonic sound with more recent releases. These recent releases - Ghost Opera and Poetry for the Poisoned have been shunned by traditional fans of Kamelot. Poetry in particular seemed to be a real turn away from the undistuped masterpiece The Black Halo (which is in my top 10 albums ever). When things were already low for the band, Roy Khan decided to leave. Any Kamelot fan could tell you that Roy was THE voice for Kamelot. He simply was an incredible vocalist and certainly among my favorites - among the favorites of many.

Two years later, enter Silverthorn with new vocalist Tommy Karevik. With the voice of Kamelot being gone, could they ascend from the shame of the public? The answer is a deep, resounding "yes." Silverthorn is a complete return to form for Kamelot - one which will more than make up for one or two lackluster albums for the traditional Kamelot fan, while still retaining elements that made previous outputs enjoyable for the more modern Kamelot fan.

Though I personally have never noticed a large change in sound, I must confess to being more in the latter category than the former. While I enjoy The Fourth Legacy and Karma quite well, The Black Halo is their first album I really loved. The two following it - yes, even the much maligned Poetry for the Poisoned - are fantastic releases as well. As such, I was way more than skeptical when I saw everyone claiming this as some return to form for Kamelot. One of my favorite singers ever is gone, some guy from some band I never heard of replaced him (note to self: go listen to Seventh Wonder immediately), and the band has return to a sound more akin to The Fourth Legacy. Great.....

Silverthorn definitely has a sound more akin to earler albums than latter, but I would say this has much more in common with The Black Halo than anything else. Really, Kamelot just shines with their concept albums, don't they? The music is cohesive with a kind of flow where you know this is a concept album, and tracks like "Silverthorn" and "Solitaire" would've fit right in there. Though lead single “Sacrimony (Angel of Afterlife)” – among the album’s highlights – sound similar to The Fourth Legacy indeed (the first time listening to it, all I could think of was how similar the vocal melody “Forgive my sacrimony” sounded to “In following the fourth legacy”), there are certain nuances that remind me of "March of Mephisto" - from the black metal shrieks by Alissa White-Gluz (note: the guest appearances on this album are singers from terrible bands) to how certain lines remind so well of Roy's classic performance in the above mentioned song. Yet, despite these similarities, the song has its own character and is right there in league with some of the best music Kamelot has put out.

But really, the way the songs are written is in a style quite similar to The Black Halo in almost every track. I've never been overly keen on Kamelot ballads, but "Song for Jolee" is simply beautiful, reminding me of (to the surprise of no one) "Abandoned" - maybe because "Abandoned" is the only other Kamelot ballad I really like, but I can't help but notice similarities in melodies, poignancy, or even the climax towards the end where the chorus is repeated with typical metal instrumentation (drums, guitar, etc) added... and even some symphonic fancyness right before that.

Nonetheless, tracks like "My Confession" and the longer expected-"epic" "Prodigal Son" are much more downcast, certainly bringing to mind moments of Kamelot's two albums prior. "My Confession" has more reliance on symphonics and drawing out emotion, and it recalls songs such as "Up Through the Ashes" or "Mourning Star." Though I expected "Prodigal Son" to remind more of "Memento Mori," its gloomy aura brings more to mind what the "Poetry for the Poisoned" tracks would've given off if united as one song. With arguably increased catchiness and powerful riffing, I'd guess even the stubborn haters of latter-era Kamelot will welcome these tracks despite their similarities.

Of course, with Khan being who he is, the biggest source of attention is going to be the new vocalist. And, well.... he sounds just like Khan. I have no prior experience with Tommy - as such, I have no idea how much he's TRYING, but he's very similar regardless. He sounds SO similar, in fact, I'd bet that a passing Kamelot fan would think it's still Roy singing. His work in "Sacrimony (Angel of Afterlife), "Veritas," and "Silverthorn" in particular remind me of Roy every damn time. Yet even so, he has his own touch and style that certainly makes him notably different. Worse than Roy? In my opinion, yes, but few can reach the echelons Roy reached. Tommy has a fantastic voice regardless, and I have never encountered another vocalist who could've been a better fit. He sounds utterly sincere and delivers a stunningly emotional performance in a way I thought only Roy could do. In other words: he done good.

I am endlessly amazed by this album. It's not among their best, and I'd still pick Ghost Opera and Poetry for the Poisoned ahead of this, but this is truly a surprisingly excellent piece of work from the kings of symphonic power metal. They took inspiration from all of their releases, melded them together, then thrust their greatest era to highest dominance. I fully expected this to be terrible without Roy - initially, my opinion on the album wasn't much better than that. But with every listen it has grown more and more, to the point I suspect this may very well one day sit alongside it's most glaring inspiration, The Black Halo. I am a diehard fan of Kamelot's latter work and Roy Khan - if it can convince me, it can convince you.



Recent reviews by this author
Dark Tranquillity ConstructIn the Silence A Fair Dream Gone Mad
Omnium Gatherum BeyondOmnium Gatherum New World Shadows
Unmoored Indefinite Soul-extensionStill Remains The Serpent
user ratings (167)
Chart.
3.7
great
other reviews of this album
Christopher Geriak (4)
Kamelot has done it once again....

Kenneth E. Rathburn (3.5)
Tommy Karevik helps Kamelot remember their tried-and-true form, but the band forget a bit of spirit ...


Comments:Add a Comment 
eyesofapocalypse
November 5th 2012



25 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Love how I can proofread a review four times and still find errors. Dammit.

NocteDominum
Contributing Reviewer
November 5th 2012



6934 Comments


Great album

Friday13th
November 5th 2012



2186 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Still contemplating whether to buy this or not. I just wish Tommy sang like he did in Seventh Wonder instead of doing a Khan imitation.

Digging: Opeth - Pale Communion

Rikardur
November 5th 2012



731 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Good review. My only problem is this album's unfortunate lack of memorable melodies. Even Ghost Opera and Poetry (the two critically shunned ones) had songs with much more memorable vocal lines. Maybe it's the fact that Tommy's voice doesn't carry the (emotional) weight of Roy's voice...fuck, who knows. This is at least decent, so I'm happy.

KjSwantko
November 5th 2012



9052 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

"Maybe it's the fact that Tommy's voice doesn't carry the (emotional) weight of Roy's voice...fuck, who knows."

Basically. Tommy is easily the best replacement they could've found though. No shame in not being able to match Roy in terms of skill, emotion, and personality.

KjSwantko
November 5th 2012



9052 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

Album has grown on me a ton though. 3'd after one listen, then bumped to 3.5 after a couple more, now I'm up to a 4 and thoroughly enjoying this.

VermicideReloadead
November 5th 2012



1433 Comments


I need to check this thing very carefully, I heard the single days ago, I liked it but not better than their material with roy, still the song was very good.

eyesofapocalypse
November 5th 2012



25 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

It was more like a 3.25 for me originally, but now it's more like a 4.25. So yes, it definitely grows.

I disagree with a lack of memorable vocal lines, though. I find every single chorus of the album to be catchy as hell - that's more than I can say about any other Kamelot album, honestly. Tommy definitely can't hold up to Roy, in my opinion, but that's like saying one's second favorite band can't hold up to one's favorite band, really. Point is that Tommy is still does a great job, it's just that he's going to be compared to what is probably the greatest voice power metal has ever seen.

Dummit
November 7th 2012



342 Comments


I'm a huge Kamelot fanboy, and the departure of Khan made me really sad, but I do think Tommy can fill his shoes.

I have hope for this to be really good.

CosmicPie
March 16th 2014



1073 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

As legendary as Kahn is, they did a great job picking up Karevik.

CalculatingInfinity
March 16th 2014



1440 Comments


I honestly perfer Karevik over Kahn although I'm judging Karevik on his work with Seventh Wonder.

CosmicPie
March 17th 2014



1073 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I don't think there's a Metal vocalists I dig more than Kahn… But like I said, Karevik is damn close.

KjSwantko
March 17th 2014



9052 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

Nice review. I think this is a solid and underrated album, but it's still nothing compared to prime Kamelot with Roy.

KjSwantko
March 17th 2014



9052 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

Props to the band too because I'm not sure there's a better replacement they could've picked than Karevik. Roy was literally one of a kind. Scary good voice he had.



You have to be logged in to post a comment. Login | Create a Profile





FAQ // STAFF & CONTRIBUTORS // SITE FORUM // CONTACT US

Bands: A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z


Site Copyright 2005-2013 Sputnikmusic.com
All Album Reviews Displayed With Permission of Authors | Privacy Policy