Kamelot has been one of the major acts in the melodic metal genre and despite some changes in the line-up, they have always kept a high profile and recently released a new album titled Haven. Co-editor Fabian did an interview with Thomas Youngblood, here’s the result…
You are touring the US at the moment, how is the tour going so far?
Tour is going amazing! Full packed houses and bigger venues, really a dream come true. The Album debut #1 on the Hard Rock charts too. So awesome.
Can you tell me why a lot of bands are touring the US first instead of Europe? Is there a growing interest in Melodic Metal bands over there?
We usually tour Europe first to be honest. It was the plan initially but the album was delayed so we moved the EU Tour to Sept. Metal is big here but I dont know if its bigger than Europe.
Congratulations with the new album, it is another step forward in comparision with the previous album, do you confirm this?
Thanks! Well I hope so, we work hard for this everytime. There are straight to the point songs on Haven and also some very ambitious songs, full of many elements that will get lost on one or two listens. We are still composing albums for the fans that listen from start to finish. This is why we do albums and not eps or just singles. They are lifeforms, part of a family of compositions that should be soaked in together. Of course for the type of listener that only picks one or two songs, that is fine and they will be happy.
On “Silverthorn” Tommy sounded more like the replacement of Roy Khan, but on “Haven” he sounds like he found his own voice, tell me more about Tommy’s time now in Kamelot?
Well I dont agree with the statement he sounds like a replacement. He has now integrated into the band 100% and has all the confidence and support he needs. So with Haven he is showing more of his range and style and doing some of the best vocal work in his career. Of course it really helps that we toured alot with Silverthorn, and that made the band tighter than ever. So now the new era has officially begun and we are ready to rock the planet. From day one we moved forward on the singer situation and never looked back. That mindset was important for all us and its really the way we do things, looking ahead and setting goals.
Can you tell me more about the creating process of the songs from the new album. Are all the members involved in the writing process?
We do things different and it takes a bit more time and money than conventional bands. I travelled to Germany to work with Oliver for weeks on this. Tommy travelled to Germany to work with Sascha, several times over the past year. Also Tommy and Oliver worked with VST Connect over the internet and it really was a great way to work in two different countries.
Is “Haven“ a concept album? Can you tell me something about the lyrics behind the songs?
Its not a concept but has a theme. One of most important aspects of a Kamelot album should be the mix emotions on the record. Music is about emotion, and with Haven the listener is taken on a rollercoaster of emotions from start to finish. We touched on many subjects and it seems to have a redline throughout some of the songs. Again we always want to have the ebb and flow of all emotions, and that's really what music is about, emotion. So on Haven we decided to make the record more in the now and future versus the 17th century as the previous record.
Kamelot has a special relationship with Holland, it all started with Simone Simons doing a duet with Roy Khan and now with Charlotte Wessels from Delain. How did this all started?
Not sure to be honest, but from almost day one Holland was there for us and is one of the top 3 countries for Kamelot. We will never ever forget that.
Every album you are getting more popular, what are you hoping to reach in the future with the band?
To continue to grow musically and also our fanbase. So we can do bigger productions for the fans, thats always goal number one, a great show.
At last I have some short personal questions:
When and why did you start playing guitar?
Age 16, after getting a guitar for Christmas. I played sax before that.
3 Olders sisters
Do you come from a musical family?
First bought LP:
Brass Mug Tampa, 1998
Favorite guitar player:
Many but Schenker, Malmsteen, Lifeson
Favorite non Metal artist:
Italian and Thai
Craft Beer, Vokda/Fresca
Tennis, Football, Soccer
Favorite country to play:
Japan, Holland, all of them!!
Your favorite Kamelot song:
Anything to add for our readers:
Thanks for your amazing support, see you on the tour soon!!
Thanks for the interview, goodbye!