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Kamelot - Siege Perilous CD (album) cover

SIEGE PERILOUS

Kamelot

 

Progressive Metal

3.10 | 40 ratings

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Easy Livin
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator / Retired Admin
3 stars Rhapsodies

On to their third album in as many years, and Kamelot have undergone their first major line up changes. Out go original lead vocalist Mark Vanderbilt and drummer Richard Warner, to be replaced by Roy Kahn (from Conception) and Casey Grillo respectively. This however was more than simply a case of a couple of substitutions being made, as Siege Perilous also represents a significant change for the band in musical terms.

The prevailing view among fans is that while Vanderbilt was a capable singer, his style was not well suited to Kamelot. Personally, I do not subscribe to that line, for me the first two albums were well made and highly enjoyable. Indeed, from the evidence of the opening Providence, Vanderbilt's voice is arguably the more powerful.

We should however not be too quick to judge as the vocals are well back in the mix here. The track is a slow, powerful piece with choral keyboards and melodic lead guitar. The first we hear of the familiar double paced drumming is on Millennium, where Khan's vocals become more defined. His style is similar to that of Ronnie James Dio, the melody being of the type which Rainbow would be proud.

It is though tracks such as King's eyes which point towards the future. The structure here is more considered than most of the song's peers to date, the soft acoustic core contrasting tastefully with the melodic rock of the main sections. While there is no apparent concept as such, the track themes are often related to Lord of the rings type mythology, a topic Rhapsody would later exploit in a similar style of music. Where I reign for example could easily have been covered by Rhapsody, and would have fitted in on their albums very well. This is actually one of the more striking songs, moving from a gentle flute sound at the start through some fine lead guitar with dramatic backing and building to a powerful conclusion.

Parting visions may be the shortest track on the album, and indeed the most accessible, but it is quite irresistible, the synth runs and lead guitar combining with a striking melody. It is immediately followed by an uncharacteristically melancholy song Once a dream, another song with strong commercial potential. As with Creation from the previous album, the instrumental Siege offers the band members the opportunity to show off their dexterity, the track hopping remorselessly from theme to theme and sound to sound.

As with previous albums, there is no feature track here as such, each song running to between 4 and 6 minutes. While several feature arrangements which go beyond being single paced melodic rock numbers, none stretches the band. This is though a competently crafted album which links the past to the future in terms of the band's development.

Easy Livin | 3/5 |

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