Kamelot’s album “Haven”, released May 5th, 2015, made a stunning debut on Billboard going straight up to #1 position on Hard Rock Album Chart. “This is a first in Kamelot’s history and we’re obviously very proud and happy about it. I’d like to thank all the fans for your amazing support, thanks for your great feedback on Haven and the Insomnia video as well – stay tuned as we have more of these coming up in the next months! See you somewhere on tour in 2015!”–Thomas Youngblood.
KAMELOT is the Epic/Symphonic metal rock band that nobody, no matter their musical taste, can resist. Formed by the mega-talented Thomas Youngblood and Richard Werner, the latter departing the band in 1997, Kamelot is one of the very few active epic metal bands that have actually managed to keep both fans and specialised media continuously enthralled by their creativity, the quality of their composition and their consistently great live sound.
This team didn’t have any difficulty in choosing the group/artist that we thought would represent best the mastery of this genre, whilst maintaining a fresh and surprisingly solid material, which transcends the labelling of any style.
Kamelot ‘speaks’ of the creation and destruction cycle in their music with a thoughtfulness and a poetry that directly sets them apart from any act that seeks the shock in what is usually a mere posing act. Their authenticity is as heartfelt as their sharp technique and depth of sound are merciless.
(Founder/Songwriter/Guitarist of KAMELOT)
We were ecstatic by the chance to interview Master Youngblood on epic adventures, legendary messages and enrapturing riffs.
WONDERLANCER: Thomas, we are very pleased to have your participation in this interview, thank you again for accepting our invitation. KAMELOT was founded in 1994 and nowadays is not only active and kicking hard, but is also widely considered as one of the best and most exciting Progressive/Symphonic Metal Rock bands in the world. So… exactly, what deal did you make with the devil?
THOMAS YOUNGBLOOD: Haha, no deals with the devil here. First thanks for the kind words regarding the band. I think any successful artist or band is a result of hard work, a dedication to quality and also a bit of luck. We put everything we have into all aspects of the band, from the music, lyrics, artwork to the live presentation. We are also fortunate to have some amazing fans that have supported us and are part of the success as well. Our live shows are something we look forward to every year, it’s like a gathering of souls in a way.
WONDERLANCER: What meaning was found in Camelot, the legendary King Arthur’s court, which prompted Kamelot, the band, to adopt the same name?
THOMAS YOUNGBLOOD: Initially Kamelot was more of themed medieval based band, so the name Kamelot was perfect for this. My mom actually suggested the name, both due to the style of the band and also her love for the former president John F. Kennedy. The word “Camelot” is sometimes used to refer admiringly to the presidency of John F. Kennedy, as his term was said to have potential and promise for the future. Since the 3rd and 4th album we felt the need to branch out from these fantasy type lyrics and write songs about anything we felt that inspired us.
WONDERLANCER: Moms know best… Your lyrics, across your now eleven original albums, not only are beautifully ‘crafted’ but many do indeed unveil very profound subjects. Why, in your opinion, is so difficult for us to reconcile with the fact that we aren’t separate from Nature?
THOMAS YOUNGBLOOD: Part of the human evolution includes the premise that we are different from other animal species. While this is true to a certain extent, we are still all animals. Reason, inquiry, language, wonder, longing, creativity, and humor are not unique to humans; the human is simply more evolved on different levels. Also some religions have stated that God made us in his own likeness, this is another reason that many people find it OK to separate ourselves from other animals.
WONDERLANCER: The sea is a recurrent setting in many of your lyrics, same as war, destruction, post-apocalyptic scenarios and the belief in a God. Do you think that the attraction for the sea could come from the impossibility to dominate it? And, onto the subject of war and God… Can a war really be honourable or God/s-blessed?
THOMAS YOUNGBLOOD: What is more beautiful and inspiring than a moon lit ocean with a clear star filled sky? Even though it covers 70% of the earth and is vital for life, the oceans and seas are probably the most foreign place for humans. So in this sense it holds a lot of mystery and wonder. Regarding war, I think this comes down to many factors. If you believe in the 10 commandments, and one of them says”Thou shall not kill”, then you cannot personally justify war, the death penalty or any other time of murder. It’s very simple and clear, and those commandments do not have fine print with stipulations.
Something many religious people forget to think about. Now, if your morality is not based in religion and only in the common sense of right and wrong, you have to gauge war based on other factors. I think any war that involves the killing of innocent people is wrong. If someone invades my land, home etc., then I have no problem defending my castle so to speak, by any means necessary.
THOMAS YOUNGBLOOD: Bands like Rush and Queen were my earliest influences, I also liked Maiden and some Priest growing up. My first instrument was the saxophone; I played in junior high school and learned Sir Duke from Stevie Wonder. I was around 11, I think, or 12 years old.
Later, after my father passed away, I got into heavier music and metal, I was very depressed and this music was an escape for me. My cousin worked at a music store and I got a guitar for Christmas. I was hooked ever since, playing to Schenker, Malmsteen and Classical players like Strunz and Farrar for example. The symphonic elements started intriguing me after listening to Cirque Du Soleil.
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