(EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW WITH THOMAS YOUNGBLOOD – CONTINUED – Page 2)
WONDERLANCER: What do you think of the new progressive metal bands in the current international musical scene, are any of them innovating and succeeding at it at all?
THOMAS YOUNGBLOOD: For me there are a few standouts, one is Symphony X. Great vocals and also not the typical Dream Theatre clone band that so many of the prog bands end up sounding like. Don’t get me wrong, most of the prog bands out these days are amazing musicians, it’s just that I can immediately hear what their main influence is and it’s usually Dream Theatre. I also listen a lot to singers, Michael Eriksen from Circus Maximus is fantastic. Opeth is also interesting, not sure if they are prog. I don’t consider Kamelot to be prog either, if that matters. I think the tags and labels of music can be a bit too limiting.
WONDERLANCER: The band’s YouTube channel is one of the top 10 music channels and Number 1 Metal Channel, across all sub-genres. Talking about the new technologies… What’s the real evil: technology in itself or certain uses of technology?
THOMAS YOUNGBLOOD: The INTERNET has helped so many bands, including Kamelot. It has also hurt many bands with download being so easy. Also a few years back, no one was producing videos. None of the “music TV” channels would play them, only reality shows and crap. Now that Youtube, Vevo and others exist we can make videos and reach a larger audience. We are still selling records however, and that’s because our fans RULE! Also I think it’s a simple respect for the music and the time that goes into it. Making an album costs a lot of money, there is more to it than the actual cost of the CD and the booklet. Months of song writing, months in the studio, photo shoots, promoting etc…So when someone says it only costs 50 cents to make a CD, think again. One thing I notice lately is that some artists will say, “no one buys albums anymore”. While physical sales have dropped and will continue to, I think this kind of statement is a slap in the face to fans that still buy albums.
WONDERLANCER: Where do you get your inspiration to create such a unique and rich material?
THOMAS YOUNGBLOOD: We are inspired by everything these days. Life, travel, history, art, family and more… We would also sit and discuss topics that may be interesting for the listener. There is no limit to what we can write about, our fans are very open minded and so are we. I still feel like I did years ago regarding new ideas and inspiration, also new musical ideas are popping up like crazy now. This is most time off I have had in years and the space has opened my mind for new and fresh ideas.
WONDERLANCER: What’s the ‘Human Stain’ most difficult to remove?
THOMAS YOUNGBLOOD: It has to be murder, taking another life. Or even worse, the murder of an innocent child, that is unforgivable and those who do that will never be rehabilitated. I have extreme views on what we should do with those people. Ever seen the movie ‘Law Abiding Citizen’? Of course the most common idea of this Human Stain is the mark that humans leave on the planet. The stain of killing off the rain-forest, over use of resources, wars, pushing out animal habitat to extinction.
WONDERLANCER: Every tour you draw more and more fans of all ages. Why do you think that is?
THOMAS YOUNGBLOOD: I think our music and style crosses so many borders and ages. Musically we mix a lot of things together, and that appeals to more than just one audience. Visually we try to be more than just a metal band, our videos are unique and we pick great directors for the shoots. One thing is for sure, the fan base has gotten much younger over the last 4-5 years and it’s really awesome. We never planned any of this however, so it’s even cooler now to see 13 old girls in the front row and the 30 something year olds behind them, everyone rocking out, some moshing, and some just listening.
WONDERLANCER: The Swedish Tommy Karevik has proven to be far more than just a worthy successor to Khan. He’s certainly won ours and the hearts (and ears) of all fans.
Apart from his excellence both on the mike and as a partner songwriter, which was made patent in the also amazing “Silverthorn” (2012), who else can we hear, on the side of great collaborations, in the new album?
THOMAS YOUNGBLOOD: Yes, Tommy Karevik has exceeded all expectations. “Haven” also features cameos by ARCH ENEMY’s Alissa White-Gluz, NIGHTWISH’s Troy Donockley and DELAIN’s Charlotte Wessels.
WONDERLANCER: Please, tell our readers more about “Haven”, your 11th …
THOMAS YOUNGBLOOD: The Haven album has an undertone of a world going insane. There is a grey cloud that is forming over our world. We are here to find that silver lining with an album that is both dark and melancholy yet uplifting and giving the listener a Haven in a world gone mad. We are really proud of the song elements and diversity on “Haven”.
WONDERLANCER: Looking forward to hear it and see you live! Thank you very much for your time, Thomas.
THOMAS YOUNGBLOOD: Many thanks for the interview! Thanks to all of the amazing fans and I hope to see all of you on tour very soon!
WONDERLANCER: Want to! By the way, here’s the direct link to Kamelot’s Tour Dates & Tickets, kids. Rock on!: KAMELOT * Tour Dates >
And another treat for the great video/film producers & creatives/specialists that we know love this space, too: The making/behind the scenes of the ‘Insomnia’ video (by the amazing iCODE TEAM).
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