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Kamelot - The Black Halo CD (album) cover

THE BLACK HALO

Kamelot

 

Progressive Metal

4.10 | 288 ratings

From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

SouthSideoftheSky
Special Collaborator
Symphonic Team
3 stars Memento mori

I know that many would disagree, but for me Karma and especially Epica were somewhat disappointing. As I pointed out in my reviews of these two previous albums, being symphonic or orchestral should not be confused with being progressive. In my opinion, Kamelot were absolutely in their element on the excellent The Fourth Legacy on which they perfected their early style and injected it with folky and oriental influences without ever sounding bombastic or overblown. With The Black Halo, Kamelot once again tones down the worst excesses and injects some more progressive elements into their brand of symphonic Power Metal.

The melodies are the strongest since The Fourth Legacy and the first four tracks are very enjoyable indeed. The guest performance of the great Jens Johansson (of Yngwie Malmsteen's Rising Force fame) on March Of Mephisto is interesting. Johansson is a fantastic keyboard player, but his presence here admittedly appeared slightly out of place to me on the first few listens. But overall, the inclusion of a couple keyboard solos in the early tracks adds a much needed diversity to Kamelot's sometimes rather one-dimensional sound.

Had things continued on with the same high quality of the first few tracks this albums would even have rivaled The Fourth Legacy. But after the initial excitement, the album tends to settle with the same familiar formula. A bit more diversity and variation could have helped, but there is clearly talent in this band. The Black Halo might be Kamelot's most progressive album, but it is not their best. The Fourth Legacy remains my favourite Kamelot album, but The Black Halo is a return to form and a good album in its own right.

SouthSideoftheSky | 3/5 |

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