I have been looking forward to The Shadow Theory as soon as I’ve heard Haven for the first time… because, already then, I wanted more at once. I know I am very demanding 🤓, and yet, I am unmoved, just work faster 😈. Jokes aside, The Shadow Theory is a masterpiece. Mind you, we had a heads-up from the band, but you know how it is, you want to believe that it is going to be as announced but you still want to remain objective in order to provide true feedback (non pre-conditioned feedback or whatever). I will prove to you that even if I am well-aware of my non-objectivity, I can remain critical… don’t bite my head-off, I need this out of the way.
The first listening was a bust
I usually have this nice tradition going on with my husband when discovering a new album, even more so when it comes to Kamelot. This year, however, it all went wrong which made me a very disappointed… I was supposed to get the CD on the day of the release, but it did not happen that way and I listened to the iTunes compressed version of The Shadow Theory – for the first time – through our speakers (good ones 😅). Gosh that went real bad… but what do they say? Live and learn, right!?
Anyhow, having only iTunes as my source that weekend, I put on my headphones and played The Shadow Theory a few times before I realised I had done so. Let me get this out of the way as well: The Shadow Theory is an extremely addictive album. It will wake you up at night, playing loudly in your head so that you’d play it for real. You’ve been warned.
Tommy Karevik at his best
I have discovered Kamelot before Tommy‘s time in the band, but as much as I loved Roy‘s voice, Tommy‘s voice talks to me in an even deeper way. It is difficult to explain how his singing affects me, but as an incredibly gifted singer he always manages to pull me into this world he is singing. “He is the empire”… yes, yes… besides the obvious though… He sings Kamelot‘s vision of our world and somehow visually transpose it into a made up one through well chosen words. So, it feels like a sung fantasy and yet, it is as real as the sun shining high above. How to define such a great album? The band writes on their official website: “It’s time to step into the dystopic and psychological world of The Shadow Theory.” It suits me fine, any time!
Tommy has grown into his “Kamelot singing”, since Silverthorn. At the time, he was already brilliant and has not ceased to be so, but he is growing way beyond what I could have imagined and it is really amazing to witness. In The Shadow Theory, and if you have the limited deluxe earbook & digipack like me, there is a hook that caught me off guard. It’s called The Last Day of Sunlight and it is the song I listened to first (after the bust of my first listening and the wise counsel of my husband). This, right there, is a fantastic song… why only a bonus track though, I wonder. I enjoy all the songs on the album, but I have to admit that I am very partial to Amnesiac and Static. I still listen to the whole bloody thing for hours at work… keeps my mood up and my blood pumping 😋
Twice as fast
Besides the “regular” band members, although there is nothing “regular” about Thomas, Oliver, Tommy, Sean and Johan… there are three brilliant guests on The Shadow Theory that makes it all even richer (read more about the album and the contributions of Lauren Hart, Jennifer Haben and Oliver Hartmann on Kamelot Official Website). The band shines throughout the entire album, every guitar riff, rhythm and key notes proves once again the talent of each band member… as an after thought, Oliver Palotai please do remember to play your parts twice as fast now and then (you almost promised me!) 😎
Johan Nunez, welcome to Kamelot!
As you all know, I don’t write reviews, but I do write about what I feel when I listen to music… when I can articulate it in coherent sentences… and yes, I can be overly enthusiastic… bite me! 😜 What I love about Kamelot‘s music is its power and the sense of uncontrollable control one gets over ones thoughts. It pushes you to question things, even yourself, without playing the “guilty card” on us, so to speak. They don’t have the answers but they put hope in everything they play, and I am not talking only about the words. There is this undefinable golden nugget of wisdom underlining every song, tone, growl and melody.
In other words and to conclude, if you have not listened to The Shadow Theory… off you go and give it a listen. If you have not bought The Shadow Theory either, what are you waiting for? Come chop chop!
Thanks for reading!
Until next time 💞