Kamelot Ð Karma
Musically, Kamelot remain top-flight melodic power metal, shameless in their embroidered, purple and plush ballerina moves, but still, upholding the flame in America with pride and quality. Lyrically, it's another story. Kamelot tacitly reveal the silliness of their frilly-sleeved brethren, Youngblood and Khan elegantly proposing smart and interesting philosophies, karma in particular being a theme that works loosely and ambiguously through the album. There's Temples Of Gold about failed love (set of course in an environs that feels like Ritchie and Candice's old house in Connecticut), Don't You Cry a minstrel-like acoustic ballad about the death of Thomas Youngblood's father, and the closing Elizabeth, which takes an inappropriate and oft-examined bit of evil from the past (Elizabeth Bathori or Bathory) and makes it as frightening and karma-riffic as the actual person/tale deserves. But variety reigns, in heaviness, arrangement, perceived expense on our part. The fact remains, Kamelot strive to be state of the art within a much-maligned genre of music, namely the keyboardy, dramatic end of European-dripped power prog. And of course they succeed because there is a wealth of talent there, a sense of distance from the thriving hotbed of the scene, and finally, a work ethic that leaves nothing to chance.