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KAMELOT

Progressive Metal • United States


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Kamelot biography
KAMELOT debuted in 1994 with "Eternity" featuring Mark Vanderbilt on vocals, Thomas Youngblood on guitars, Glenn Barry on bass, Richard Warner on the drums and David Pavlicko on the keys, but later, after one record, Richard and Mark would leave giving a chance to Casey Grillo and Roy Kahn (Ex-CONCEPTION vocalist) to be part of the band during their third album "Siege Perilous". Their sound completley changed, they became an above-average melodic metal band, some compared them with SONATA ARCTICA or HAMMERFALL, but clearly KAMELOT was above this genre, adjusting progressive arrangements to the all ready famous melodic metal sound.

With the line-up change, KAMELOT released their best known material; albums like "The Fourth Legacy" that fused Middle-Eastern sounds with power metal speed and "Karma" where they demonstrate that talent and energy their fans worldwide acclaimed, strong, heavy, mellow, deep and thoughtfull music were highly praised by the press, getting very good reviews and giving KAMELOT the status of heavy weight. Later in 2003, they released "Epica" a conceptual piece based loosely in Goethe's Faust, "Epica" showed a peak on KAMELOT's career, melodic choirs and orchestration makes company to their trademark sound to create a whole world of fantasy and amusement, only to be shadowed by the following release "The Black Halo" in 2005, their best work yet.

The success of "The Black Halo" was followed up by "One Cold Winter's Night", the band's live DVD, filmed by Patric ULLAEUS at the Rockefeller Music Hall in Oslo, Norway. This live performance really showed Roy KHAN as one of the best vocalist working in the music business today. The band's continued on by releasing "Ghost Opera" in 2007 and "Poetry For The Poisoned" in 2010.

On September 6, 2010, the band announced that KHAN had fallen seriously ill during rehearsals for the upcoming North American tour, just a few days before its scheduled start, and had returned to his home in Norway. KAMELOT postponed the tour with KHAN, though one show was performed with Michael ERIKSEN of CIRCUS MAXIMUS at the ProgPower USA XI festival in Atlanta, Georgia, on September 10, 2010. Following a period of uncertainty regarding KHAN's health, KHAN and KAMELOT released separate statements on April 21 and 22 respectively, announcing KHANS's departure from the band.

On June 22, 2012, KAMELOT introduced SEVENTH WONDER's ...
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KAMELOT discography


Ordered by release date | Showing ratings (top albums) | Help Progarchives.com to complete the discography and add albums

KAMELOT top albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

2.93 | 41 ratings
Eternity
1996
2.95 | 42 ratings
Dominion
1997
3.12 | 46 ratings
Siege Perilous
1998
3.87 | 93 ratings
The Fourth Legacy
2000
3.85 | 139 ratings
Karma
2001
3.91 | 156 ratings
Epica
2003
4.10 | 278 ratings
The Black Halo
2005
3.42 | 115 ratings
Ghost Opera
2007
3.55 | 112 ratings
Poetry For The Poisoned
2010
3.54 | 66 ratings
Silverthorn
2012
3.51 | 58 ratings
Haven
2015

KAMELOT Live Albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.91 | 20 ratings
The Expedition
2000

KAMELOT Videos (DVD, Blu-ray, VHS etc)

4.53 | 54 ratings
One Cold Winter's Night
2006

KAMELOT Boxset & Compilations (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

4.10 | 21 ratings
Ghost Opera - The Second Coming
2008
4.00 | 4 ratings
Poetry for the poisoned & live from wacken
2011

KAMELOT Official Singles, EPs, Fan Club & Promo (CD, EP/LP, MC, Digital Media Download)

2.83 | 6 ratings
Myths & Legends Of Kamelot
2008
4.00 | 6 ratings
Sacrimony
2012

KAMELOT Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 The Black Halo by KAMELOT album cover Studio Album, 2005
4.10 | 278 ratings

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The Black Halo
Kamelot Progressive Metal

Review by Warthur
Prog Reviewer

3 stars Kamelot play a style of symphonically-inclined power metal that in principle hits all the right notes but in practice leaves me cold. I think the problem for me is that tonally speaking it falls between two stools; it's a little too cheesy to be taken as a more sober artistic statement, but not quite cheesy enough to be taken as goofy, gonzo fun. It's modern Hollywood blockbuster power metal, where it's hardly worth paying attention to what movie you're walking into because it'll be the same general characters shot with the same general CGI aesthetic and offering the same general Joss Whedony/JJ Abramsy quips whichever you go to see. The Black Halo is as palatable as it gets for me but that is literally all it is: palatable.
 Silverthorn by KAMELOT album cover Studio Album, 2012
3.54 | 66 ratings

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Silverthorn
Kamelot Progressive Metal

Review by Prog Leviathan
Prog Reviewer

3 stars Vocalist Roy Khan's has departed, but power/prog metal steadfast Kamelot continue on their path of solid releases with Silverthorn, this time with new singer Karevik. The result is a predictable, but enjoyable, release from a guilty-pleasure metal group that plays to their strengths well, creating a competent collection of songs that drip with drama-club theatrics, excellent instrumental performances, and artistic energy.

I enjoyed Khan's vocals quite a bit; they were a significant element of Kamelot's sound, and his loss is noticed. However, Karevik is no slouch. His overall timbre is consistent with Khan's, though each singer has his strengths. In Silverthorn, Karevik shows great proficiency in creating varied phrasing that adds an even higher (!) sense of drama. He is best when he's belting out the exciting stuff. However, the ballads and down-tempo moments throughout this album are not as engaging as we've heard Kamelot deliver before. Still, fans of the band won't be turned off by inclusion to the group's roster.

Musically, Silverthorn is very song-oriented. Tracks are 4-5 minutes, loosely connected, and generally accomplish what they set out to do. The standout is, not surprisingly, the extended "Prodigal Son," which is opened up enough for the group to explore more ideas than can be crammed into the shorter songs. The songwriting is standard power-metal fare though Kamelot's execution always seems to come off with more nuance and class than some of their contemporaries. The heavy synth work and inclusion of symphonic elements adds a touch of style (or cheese, your choice), that makes the album feel like it is offering more than it really is.

This, and the band's generally quite good instrumental work makes me wish they strive for more ambition and experimentation. This is especially true for guitarist Thomas Youngblood, whose consistency and energy are unflappable, but never elevates his presence in the songs to anything more than fast riffing and solos which come and go so quickly that they don't leave an impression. Come on Thomas... give me a 2-minute epic closing guitar solo I know you would nail!

Kamelot's albums are routine experiences, and without a strong narrative or vision to grab hold onto, which Silverthorn does not have, we're sort of left with these bite-sized tastes of what could be a very cool metal experience. The sort of Victorian, psuedo Goth-ghost stories that the band has stewed in for the past several albums are trite and predictable. So, while fun, Silverthorn is an average prog-metal release that will definitely satisfy fans of the genre.

Songwriting: 2 - Instrumental Performances: 3 - Lyrics/Vocals: 3 - Style/Emotion/Replay: 3

 Haven by KAMELOT album cover Studio Album, 2015
3.51 | 58 ratings

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Haven
Kamelot Progressive Metal

Review by Prog Leviathan
Prog Reviewer

2 stars Kamelot is a band that is often criticized for remaking the same album with each release. I recently reviewed an album of theirs from 2000, and would be hard pressed to think of how the band has matured in these 15+ years! Think of how much bands like Rush or Dream Theater have changed in that time frame! If you're in to power metal then this isn't a bad thing, because the band hits all the right beats when it comes to making theatrical, energetic, romantic, and rousing music... it's just the same music over and over again. For years I haven't really cared, but there's something about a Haven that rubs me the wrong way, and makes me think that the band has crafted a release that makes the criticism of sameness not only accurate, but something that holds the band back.

Haven is for the most part pretty good. It's hard to knock that band's instrumental chops or energy level. Youngblood is an under rated guitarist who handles lead and backing duties, and sounds great. The rhythm section is very competent, and do a fine job driving the momentum of the album as Palotai's keyboards give us a consistent palette of textures and solos. So what's the problem?

It's the songs and the overall tone of the album, which is mired in melodrama that doesn't work this time around. The songs lack the creative "umph" and energetic spark that makes Kamelot's sound get under the skin to make one's head rock and toes tap. Even Ghost Opera, one of the band's 3-star releases immediately grabbed your attention and kept it; Haven's songs come and go. We don't have any extended pieces, a sense of crescendo throughout the album, nor a narrative thread to carry us through the music - just song after song of Karevik singing about lost love, regret, and other touchy-feely stuff. Kamelot's music always has a few soft-spots to heighten the drama and dynamics, but Haven uses it excessively, and because the exciting parts are just OK, the album is weighted down by bathos.

A few standout songs and good musicianship doesn't overcome the power metal cheese this time around, so Haven will be one for fans for whom Kamelot's style of drama-metal can do no wrong.

Songwriting: 2 - Instrumental Performances: 3 - Lyrics/Vocals: 2 - Style/Emotion/Replay: 2

 Dominion by KAMELOT album cover Studio Album, 1997
2.95 | 42 ratings

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Dominion
Kamelot Progressive Metal

Review by martindavey87

2 stars The band's debut 'Eternity', despite being nothing more than standard 90's power metal, had some pretty cool moments in there. Unfortunately their follow-up album, 'Dominion', is more-or-less the same thing, only with all- round weaker and less memorable songs.

However, with that said, there are two highlights for me, which is 'Song of Roland' and 'We Are Not Separate'. At this point both of these songs are stronger than anything else Kamelot recorded on this album or its predecessor. Sadly they're just not enough to save the whole album from being anything more than "good".

An all-round good power metal album, not really for anyone other than Kamelot diehards though. The best is yet to come.

 Eternity by KAMELOT album cover Studio Album, 1996
2.93 | 41 ratings

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Eternity
Kamelot Progressive Metal

Review by martindavey87

3 stars This is a fairly decent debut album by Kamelot, who at the time were nothing more than a generic power metal band. Progressive elements seen in later albums are rare and discreet, and the band are yet to develop a lot of the more exotic flavors heard in their later songs. But overall, there are still some great compositions on this record.

There are very few keyboard parts and the musicianship is nowhere near that of most prog/power metal bands, but that doesn't prevent a few memorable riffs popping up, such as 'Eternity' and 'The Gleeman', and 'Etude Jongleur is a nice, though short, melodic passage.

There isn't really much else to say about this album to be honest. If you're a fan of Kamelot then it's worth getting, and I think it's generally worth picking up for anyone if you can find it cheap somewhere. Kamelot didn't really hit their stride until keyboards became a more primary instrument and with the addition of vocalist of Roy Khan (who, if you're already a Kamelot fan prior to buying this album, you'll definitely notice his absence), but this still holds up well as a look at a young band who will definitely go on to better things.

 Haven by KAMELOT album cover Studio Album, 2015
3.51 | 58 ratings

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Haven
Kamelot Progressive Metal

Review by javajeff

5 stars This is what happens when you mix Seventh Wonder with Kamelot. The music is clearly Kamelot, but you can hear the influences of Tommy Karevik that helped create one of the best Progressive Metal albums of all times, Mercy Falls, as a member of Seventh Wonder. I am new to Kamelot, so in the past months I have collected everything back to Siege Perilous. I can say that Haven is one of the best albums to date. It has an infectious quality to it even though it is very different from Black Halo. I agree with others that the heart of the Kamelot catalogue begins with the excellent The Fourth Legacy, but they are on a new path making excellent music. If you enjoy Kamelot, Progressive Metal, or Symphonic Metal, there is so much to enjoy about Haven. I am a new fan of this band and look forward to future releases.
 The Fourth Legacy by KAMELOT album cover Studio Album, 2000
3.87 | 93 ratings

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The Fourth Legacy
Kamelot Progressive Metal

Review by Prog Leviathan
Prog Reviewer

4 stars This early release by Kamelot creates the rubber stamp that the symphonic-power-prog-metal band has used on each of its follow up albums to date. Normally this comment might be criticism, but Kamelot is very very good at crafting artful examples of this genre, and Fourth Legacy sets the stage. Their brand of soaring/dramatic/orchestral/romantic/angsty metal may cause some to turn up their noses, but even if you think Kamelot is derivative, light-weight, or cheesy, its hard to argue that the band is just plain a blast to listen to - Fourth Legacy is no exception.

The album starts with a symphonic intro, then drops us into the rip-roaring title track which opens the album with a grandiose momentum and melody. The interplay of instrumental virtuosity, appealing riffs and melodies, and Khan's incredibly easy-on-the-ear vocals start things off right. Outstanding guitar work by the incredibly consistent Youngblood will get your energy level up and the double-bass onslaught of Grillo's drumming will get your foot tapping. Great stuff that continues through the first half of the album, culminating in the heavily nuanced and orchestrated "Nights of Arabia." The band slows things down here and there, but for the most part each song is a bite-sized, fist-pumping, uplifting sing-along example power metal excellence. The song writing accomplishes quite a bit, considering that songs run about 4-5 minutes in length, but is not as ambitious as we'll see them attempt later. Barry gives some some fat bass riffing, easily identifiable thanks to the album's squeaky clean production, Miro's keyboard contributions add that layer of class (and camp) that elevates the band's sound to be more than simple metal shredding. The album closes as powerfully as it began with the outstanding "Lunar Sanctum," which features a slow build to the wonderfully epic conclusion.

While still an early album for Kamelot, Fourth Legacy is of consistently high quality and a worthy purchase for those interested in the band. If you like metal music with clean vocals and production, minimal instrumental excess but great playing, and a bit of heavy-handedness in the lyrics, it doesn't get much better than Kamelot, and the Fourth Legacy. 3.5 stars rounded up to 4 because it's so much fun.

Songwriting: 3 - Instrumental Performances: 4 - Lyrics/Vocals: 3 - Style/Emotion/Replay: 4

 Karma by KAMELOT album cover Studio Album, 2001
3.85 | 139 ratings

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Karma
Kamelot Progressive Metal

Review by TCat
Prog Reviewer

2 stars I had heard some good things about this band and the fans here definitely have a lot of things to say about them. Symphonic Metal can be a guilty pleasure for me from time to time, and after hearing a few tracks from a few of their albums, I was initially impressed enough to check them out a little bit more.

So after hearing this album, I agree that the band has a symphonic edge to their music, but there is nothing much on here that is progressive. The band, in reality, is not much different from the "metal" of the 80's, of which I am not a fan. The only thing that really sets them apart much from those hair bands, is a speed metal drummer, but the music isn't speed metal, it's, like I said, too similar to bands like Europe. I know that will offend some, but I really couldn't get past the fact that this could have easily fit in with those types of bands.

The vocalist is quite talented, and you can definitely hear his passion in some passages and especially in the beautiful song "Don't You Cry" (which was actually one of their first songs I heard and it was one of the songs that I thought was decent enough to give the band a try). That song is definitely a highlight of the album. There are some nice guitar passages, but they don't expand the songs enough. And I hate the fade outs that occur from time to time. They seem to be inconsequential and misplaced simply to keep the songs down to a radio friendly timing.

Anyway, this album for me was not a positive experience. It seemed too cheesy, too reminiscent of a bad decade and the speed drumming just doesn't fit with the music. There are too many great progressive metal bands out there to spend too much time with music like this. I know it fits the taste of some of the listeners out there, but hopefully no one is mislead to believe this is progressive at all. Fans of this type of music will enjoy it anyway....so....fans only. 2 stars.

 The Black Halo by KAMELOT album cover Studio Album, 2005
4.10 | 278 ratings

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The Black Halo
Kamelot Progressive Metal

Review by Isa
Prog Reviewer

5 stars |A+| Colossal.

Kamelot's seventh release, The Black Halo, remains one of the band's most critically acclaimed and highly reviewed albums, particularly on Progarchives. It also might be considered the transition album connecting the band's more power-metal styled previous works to the more (for lack of a better description up my sleeve) Gothic-themed albums which followed afterward. Released in 2005, it remains considered a modern classic for many prog-metal fans.

It is also a concept-album, specifically a sequel to the previous album Epica, both albums telling through lyrics and music an extraordinarily well-conceived story, which is loosely but highly based on the classic epic story of antiquity: Faust. Many of the lyrics involve the main character, who makes a deal with Mephisto (the devil) often reflecting on the great philosophical questions of any age: is there a supernatural realm, does God exist, what happens after death, etc. There are regular sound effects helping to depict the events being discussed in each track, such as the sound of marching during the first track, March of Mephisto.

Throughout the album, there are killer (and I mean, in terms of metal, truly epic) guitar riffs, solos, keyboard arrangements, bass support, precise and complementary drumming, and best of all, Kahn's soaring, unforgettable classically trained vocals which firmly plant one foot in the dramatic experience of opera and the other in the heavy and powerful force of metal (which, for me as an opera singer, is the best cup of tasty metallic tea I could ever find!). The songwriting is, to my ears and discernment, virtually flawless, with a not-cheesy use of classical music (which I half-jokingly proclaim with my authority as a classical musician!). The production of the album is par-excellence, not being over-produced, unlike so much prog-metal that we hear today, but just right. There are dramatic levels of soft and sorrowful, heavy and powerful, and everything in between. Each track stands alone on its own as unique, while all connect to make one hell of a cohesive musical adventure. One song is sung in an Anglicized version of Latin (Dei Gratia), and another in legit Italian (Interlude II). And honestly, what more could you want from a clean album of sumptuously musical metal?

On a personal note, this album has, over the last 9 years or so, become my top desert- island album of heavy metal, even though I've admittedly grown less fond of this genre of with the passing of years. I adore, even savor, almost every second of this album, especially Kahn's voice, who remains my favorite singer in rock music to this day, especially for his work on this album. While his departure from the band was certainly a sad even for fans, I'm happy for him and support his decision to focus more on the things that are of even greater importance in life, particularly such things as faith and family.

For me anyway, one of the greatest, most powerful, most moving albums in heavy metal history. A full blown unapologetic and epic masterpiece.

 Dominion by KAMELOT album cover Studio Album, 1997
2.95 | 42 ratings

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Dominion
Kamelot Progressive Metal

Review by Pastmaster

5 stars 'Dominion' is the second studio album by symphonic/power metal band Kamelot. Unlike most people, I think that this is a much stronger album then their debut. While their debut had it's shining moments, it felt a little too much like Queensryche at times. Not that that's a bad thing, I love Queensryche, but the best songs were the more unique tracks. For me, 'Dominion' shows a natural progression from debut to sophomore effort, having an overall stronger and more unique sound.

The album starts out with a symphonic prelude 'Ascension', which I find to be a great opener for the album and a great transition into the next track 'Heaven'. 'Heaven' immediately begins with double bass and a really fast bass-line. I love the solo and how the crunching guitar plays under the solo. The next song 'Rise Again' begins with an industrial feel having pulsating drums/electronics with the occasional guitar slash. The song does of course go into power metal, but surprisingly keeps the industrial sounds. Vanderbilt's vocals also fit really well with both the power and industrial styles. Definitely one of my favorites. Another one of my favorites comes right after, the powerful 'One Day I'll Win'. After the symphonic intro passes, the melodic guitar comes in with Vanderbilt's powerful vocals. While the song does remain the same most throughout, I never tire of the powerful stomp of the entire song.

The song 'Creation' begins with very beautiful bass work before the guitar comes in. Also about two minutes through, acoustics come in that remind me a bit of Opeth's softer songs. While not my favorite on the album, I find it to be a pretty interesting song on the album. Another favorite is the song after, 'Sin'. Beginning softly, the crunching guitar soon comes in. This song has many transitions from soft to heavy, and after the 2nd transition the song changes with some groove metal guitar.

This is the final album to feature original vocalist Mark Vanderbilt, and would be replaced with the great Roy Khan. While I do think Roy Khan is the better vocalist, and his vocals would contribute greatly to masterpieces such as 'Epica' and 'The Black Halo', Mark Vanderbilt does give a great performance on this album. Vanderbilt's vocals seem more raw then Khan's, and musically this album a bit rawer and much less polished. He still does sound like Geoff Tate at times here, but I think the rawness this time around gives his vocals his own sound.

Overall, a big step up from the debut, and I highly recommend this album to any fans of symphonic/power metal.

4.5 rounded down to 4

Thanks to ProgLucky for the artist addition. and to Rune2000 for the last updates

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