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Kamelot - Silverthorn CD (album) cover




Progressive Metal

3.53 | 77 ratings

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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

Prog Leviathan | 3/5 |


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