Kamelot
Haven


4.0
excellent

Review

by ExplosiveOranges USER (72 Reviews)
May 9th, 2015 | 244 replies


Release Date: 05/05/2015 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Somewhere in time, I will find you and haunt you again....

After longtime vocalist Roy Khan’s departure from Kamelot in 2012, it was needless to say that there were some big shoes to be filled. At the same time though, this was the perfect opportunity for the band to reinvent themselves and make up for the rather average Poetry For The Poisoned. Sure enough, Tommy Karevik quickly displayed his uncanny ability to match up against Roy’s vocal prowess, with Silverthorn being a satisfying albeit somewhat familiar showcase of the band’s abilities. It was certainly an improvement over Poetry For The Poisoned (to a lesser extent, Ghost Opera too), but it still had a handful of mundane moments. Fast forward three years, and Kamelot unveil Haven. Here, the band has crafted yet another vivid, symphonic journey while simultaneously making a step forward in the right direction.

Going into Haven, you’ll pick up pretty quickly on some of the ideas the band is going for. The production feels cleaner and more fine-cut in comparison to some of their previous work, which contrasts with some of the darker tones and themes in the songs. “Insomnia” is a great example of this, with chugging, uncomplicated guitar riffs and piano melodies forming a supportive column for a sonorous chorus. Guitarist Thomas Youngblood and keyboardist Oliver Palotai both shine through on “Veil of Elysium”, with a breathtaking solo from the former and grandiose orchestrations popping up throughout from the latter. As mentioned previously, Karevik’s clean singing is remarkably similar to that of Roy Khan, but here it feels as though he is trying to distinguish himself more; mainly due to his higher tenor vocal range best displayed on songs such as “Under Grey Skies” and “Here’s To The Fall”. The guest vocalists perform excellently as well, with Charlotte Wessels of Delain and Troy Donockley of Nightwish providing ethereal harmonies on “Under Grey Skies”. Alissa White-Gluz’s harsh vocals also give off a nice sense of divergence on the more intense “Liar Liar (Wasteland Monarchy)” and “Revolution”.

What really sells the album though is the approach the band seemed to take in making it. With almost every single album Kamelot has put out in the past decade, there’s been some sort of general concept surrounding it. This worked very well for Epica and The Black Halo, but less so on Poetry For The Poisoned. With Haven, it feels as though the band decided to focus more on the substance and character in each song as opposed to thinning out their creative process along the album as a whole. Admittedly, not all of the tracks hit their marks, especially towards the middle of the album, with “My Therapy” and “End of Innocence” coming off as slightly more tedious due to the generally slow, repetitive nature between them. However, even those songs are salvaged by Tommy’s superb vocal work. His alluring, graceful style is the best fallback the band has at this point.

In the end, Haven holds its own as Kamelot’s best album since The Black Halo, and has plenty to offer for any fan, including those who were slightly let down by Silverthorn. It seems as though the band has finally managed to rebound from a slew of painfully average works and slowly reclaim their former glory. Even with its few missteps, Haven is an engaging listen from start to finish, and the future looks bright for the kings of American symphonic metal. Now, if only they could try taking themselves a little less seriously every now and then…



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user ratings (228)
Chart.
3.6
great
other reviews of this album
1 of
  • Xenorazr CONTRIBUTOR (3.5)
    Haven sees Kamelot continue their walk on the right path after previous stumbles, but they...

    theChickenCow (4)
    Can a bombastic dystopia encompass a melodic silver lining?...

    PsychicChris (3.5)
    Haven is an album that feels comfortable enough but the less ambitious songwriting does ma...

    crashandridemusic (3.5)
    Kamelot succeeds with Karevik at the helm for the second time....

  • cardonaj (4)
    Kamelot bounce back in a mighty way to overcome their previous album and create an album f...


Comments:Add a Comment 
ExplosiveOranges
May 8th 2015


4408 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Album is available for streaming on Spotify right now. Big props to Arcadius for helping me polish this up per the usual. As always, c/c welcome.

BMDrummer
May 8th 2015


14344 Comments


one by one

ExplosiveOranges
May 8th 2015


4408 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I WILL GET TO RESOUND



(eventually)

BMDrummer
May 8th 2015


14344 Comments


no i meant the way your review is right on top of another lol, but please review cop block if anything

ExplosiveOranges
May 8th 2015


4408 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

This isn't the first time I've reviewed an album and gotten it to have three spots on the front page at the same time (*cough* KNIFE PARTY *cough*).



Gotta rejam Cop Block first.



Whispered4tw
May 8th 2015


864 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

It's not the first time I've seen End of Innocence being mentioned as a weak point of the album. It's one of my favorites though.



To me, Under Grey Skies sounds like your typical ballad and Here's To The Fall a 'look, I can sound like Khan' song (although not bad per se).

ExplosiveOranges
May 8th 2015


4408 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Whispered- Eh, fair enough. I really liked "Under Grey Skies", though.



Arcade- smh

Gameofmetal
Staff Reviewer
May 8th 2015


10402 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I want to listen to this but I promised toondude I would discog this band and so far all I've got under my belt is Epica



which is sick btw

ExplosiveOranges
May 8th 2015


4408 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

DO THE BLACK HALO NEXT





then just skip to silverthorn and this

Gameofmetal
Staff Reviewer
May 8th 2015


10402 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I like The Great Pandemonium but it's on one of their worst albums I guess.

ScuroFantasma
Staff Reviewer
May 8th 2015


11585 Comments


Great rev Explo. Always meant to check these guys and this seems like a good excuse to now.

Digging: Dekagram - May Flights Of Devils Guide

ExplosiveOranges
May 9th 2015


4408 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Game- Eh, it is a good jam.



Scuro- Thanks bruv. You'll love these guys, I know it.

trackbytrackreviews
May 9th 2015


3365 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Mind neg cuz summary

EvoHavok
May 9th 2015


7652 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Great read. I seem to enjoy Poetry more than most, but indeed, this may be their best since Black Halo.

RichardRG
May 9th 2015


32 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

I like Poetry for the Poisoned more than this.

CalculatingInfinity
May 9th 2015


8642 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

It actually is good, suprised really.

adr
May 9th 2015


12000 Comments


this band have the worst album covers

Whispered4tw
May 9th 2015


864 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

well, the band admitted that they just want good looking ladies on their covers. nothing wrong with that. 10x better than those close-ups of self-centered pop singers

newbatthis
May 9th 2015


18 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5 | Sound Off

I like this album. But then I'm the guy who loved Ghost Opera alongside The Black Halo and Epica so. This album is the sweet spot between them imo.

emester
May 9th 2015


8249 Comments


Sweet review Oranges.

I do enjoy a very select handful of power metal bands, but Kamelot is not one of them. Probably wont end up checking this out



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