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Kamelot - The Black Halo CD (album) cover




Progressive Metal

4.09 | 304 ratings

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5 stars My wide-ranging progressive musical journey began in 2004 when I found I didn't waste the chance to download some samples offered. I read thoroughly some bands biography and if I had the feeling that the band is good enough then I had to download some songs. After I've read Kamelot biography, I got the chance to download Nights of Arabia, Mirror Mirror and Center of the Universe. And they are very good. I really fell in love with and always admire Roy Khan's voice, especially in the Mirror Mirror track.

The Black Halo is a solid album by Kamelot and the only I have. I purchased it months ago in a store that provide unauthorized copied records, most of it is modern progressive music records by Pain of Salvation, Ayreon, Nightwish, Symphony X, Kamelot, Opeth, Ambeon, etc. But now the store has closed and moved on to nowhere and I'm so sad because it's the only store in Yogyakarta and I'm not yet buy all records sold there, hehe.

Back to the Black Halo, all tracks are melodious and great on its own and develop a beautiful musical flow. The opening track March of Mephisto has an interesting keyboard work by Jens Johansen, Stratovarius' keyboardist. It also features vocal parts delivered by Shagrath, vocalist of Death Metal band, Dimmu Borgir. The second track, When the Lights are Down, is more energetic and slightly faster than its predecessor features an aggressive guitar playing. The more accessible and melodic track is the next, the Haunting (Somewhere in Time). It's a catchy song, makes you to sing along with the song and it features female vocals, Simone Simons of Epica. Soul Society is a mid-pace track which features a quiet moment with children voices playing in a garden in the middle of the track. The fifth track, Interlude I: Dei Gratia, is an interlude to the next track, a beautiful ballad Abandoned. I really like the low registered vocal parts sung beautifully yet powerfully by Roy Khan. I always sing whenever I hear this track. Hypnotic! This Pain is a nice return after the calm Abandoned. It has a beautiful pounding drum work during the instrumental section to accompany the guitar solo. Then we have Moonlight, one of more accessible and melodic track. It has the best intro which features a delicate flute sound. It's one of my favorite tracks. The ninth track, Interlude II: Un Assassinio Molto Silenzioso, sung in Italian by female vocalist with her operatic voice. The album title track, the Black Halo is very powerful and has nice vocal lines. It's another favorite of mine. The next to come is Nothing Ever Dies, the one of faster tracks on the album. Memento Mori is the longest track, 8+ minutes and the best track on the album. It opened by keyboard and once again low registered vocal parts then shift to more energetic and faster pace. It gradually builds more complex towards the end and the vocals of Shagrath features once again then back to the part where Roy Khan sings in low registered note accompanied by keyboard. It flows seamlessly to next Interlude III: Midnight - Twelve Tolls for a New Day. The last track is Serenade, powerful and fast pace track with its incredible guitar work near the end of the track.

The Black Halo is a beautiful album and anyway you will find a different musical direction than any progressive metal band out there, so it quite demanding to accept at first listens. There are definitely no Dream Theater or Pain of Salvation technical senses, but once it clicks with you, you won't regret. Try it for yourself. maXmuri - Yogyakarta Indonesia

maXmuri | 5/5 |


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