Released: 2015, Napalm Records
Reviewer: Carla (Guest reviewer Denmark/Romania)
I think 2015 is the ‘back to basics’ year. First we had Ensiferum’s ‘One Man Army’ with a more blackish rather than a folk sound; and with ‘Manala’, Korpiklaani takes us into a mystical world, showing a clear influence of Jonne’s mantra.
Now we have the brand new Kamelot album, HAVEN and it is truly a delight. I don’t know why, but lately when I hear someone talking about Kamelot, I immediately think of GHOST OPERA. Why? I don’t know, maybe because it was something different, or because they were among the few that managed to detached themselves from their previous style, not sounding like complete idiots while trying a dress much more smaller than their size.
For those who aren’t up to date with the new Kamelot line-up, Roy Khan (vocals) was replaced in 2011 by Tommy Karevik due to some anxiety/depression issues. Without further ado, the new album is a return to THE BLACK HALO era, a powerful yet lean masterpiece, where Karevik is following the footsteps of its predecessor. The entire album has a ‘feeling-good’ vibe, energetic solos and an uplifting voice.
“Fallen Star” – a perfect preview of what is ahead. Few keyboard notes accompanied by Karevik’s soft voice, followed by an uplifting crescendo. “Insomnia” – the track that recently has a video. I bet most of you listened to it already, but for those who didn’t I have 2 words to describe it – amazing chorus. “Veil of Elysium” is my personal favorite. It has a strong opening, a classic fast paced Kamelot song alongside soaring vocals (yes, I will say this this a lot, I am in love with Karevik’s voice and with the entire album composition). The 5th song is a superb ballad with Chalotte Wessels from Delain, “Under Grey Skies”. The lyrics are a combination of sadness, passion, and empathy, worship, misery, hope... one word: masterpiece. An interesting track is “Liar, Liar (Wasteland Monarchy)” that features Alissa White-Gluz. It perfectly alternates a slow rhythm with a fast-paced guitar, and hard-hitting drums.
To sum it up, HAVEN is a masterpiece, a must have for any Kamelot fan, or any progressive/ symphonic power metal fan. Tommy Karevik, you have my admiration, Kamelot never sounded better, your deep voice adds fuel to an already ignited barrel, and this composition is just brilliantly magnificent. HAVEN will definitely keep fans more than satisfied.