Me

No User

You must log in to access your account.

Epica

Epica thumbnail

Best Offer

$7.91

Reviews

Average Rating
★★★★½
(48 Reviews)

Metal Album Reviews[RSS]

  • I must admit, I came by “Epica” a bit by accident. I was experimenting with various power metal bands, found “Karma” acceptable, so when I found “Epica” in my nearby music store, I bought it, without reading any reviews beforehand. This turned out to be one of my best music purchase decisions ever made.

    “Epica” is an album that excells on all fronts. First of all, musically, it is two notches up from the previous Kamelot works. There’s a lot of instrumentation here, many “guest stars”, and it is all used to the furthest extent possible. In terms of musical complication, this approaches the barrier of classical music, which is a pretty high achievement for a metal band.

    What is also incredible about this album is that it is one, complete composition. This causes two things. First of all, listening to the entire album is a wonderful experience since all the songs follow a main theme and as you listen, you feel yourself flow with it. Second of all, this means that all the songs on the album are important, and thus, althought this sounds nigh impossible, all of them are of great quality. There is no song on the album that I consider inferior, no song that feels like a space-filler. Every single title has its place.

    Another quality of “Epica” is its diversity. You have fast pieces like the opening “Center of the Universe”, you have slow ballads like “Wander”, you have epic songs like “Lost and Damned”. Everything you would expect from great power metal and more is on this CD.

    It is of course hard to rate music because musical taste differs from person to person and a 5 star rating might not necessarily mean something that goes well with you. However, I cannot give “Epica” any other rating – it is my favorite album, not only in the power metal genre, but overall, which is quite an achievement. If you like this sort of music, I strongly urge you to try it out – I guarantee you won’t be disappointed.

    Posted on December 11, 2009 - Permalink - Buy Now
  • Aside from its less-than-fantastic production, which is easy to overlook, Kamelot’s Epica is a wonderful trip through a world beyond human realization. Roy Khan’s vocals, coupled with some good female vocalists, are the icing on the cake formed by great guitar work and mind-blowing musical compositions. The opening full-length track and the last song are the best, making for a spellbinding introduction and powerful closer, while the material held within provides a listening experience that you’ll want to relive over and over. Highly recommended to fans of bands like Blind Guardian, Edguy, Iced Earth, Demons & Wizards, Stratovarius, the almighty Symphony X, and other real metal artists!

    Posted on December 10, 2009 - Permalink - Buy Now
  • If you’re already a Kamelot fan,then U know what an awesome power-metal band they are.Already proving themselves with The Fourth Legacy & Karma,they take it to the next level with a concept album that is a masterpiece of metal.Complete with orchestral vocals,killer riffs,and most noticably,Khan’s vocal performance.This dude can sing!Rather than delve into the concept,I’ll simpily tell what trax kick …!Edge of Paradise,Descent of the Archangel,,the beutiful ballad Wander,The Mourning After and the killer III Ways to Epica.The cd has interludes that melt each track into the next seamlessly taking the listener into a super sonic mid evil dimension of metal bliss.The production is the best the bands ever had,and the entire band has stepped it up making Kamelot run like a well oiled machine.There is alot of atmosphere on this album and I can’t reccomend it enough to fans of Stratovarius,Nightwish,older Queensryche and even Savatage.Incredible musicianship and a wonderful story line, EPICA takes it’s place next to the likes of Abigail,Streets A Rock Opera,OPERATION:MINDCRIME & The Odyssey as a classic metal concept album.My favorite of 2003 thus far,it deserves a 5 star rating and your full attention.

    Posted on December 10, 2009 - Permalink - Buy Now
  • Do yourself the favor, spend time with this recording. Most people reading any of our reviews of these bands are here for a reason – We all love this kind of music.I no longer know if bands like Kamelot, Symphony X, Vanden Plas are power metal. Or is it music written and performed by progressive thinking musicians who happen to play electric instruments.Epica takes up where Karma left off stylistically, with some pounding numbers, some laid back pieces, and Khans soaring vocal chords ripping right through you. This is a roller coaster of melodies, tempos, and themes.Like most fans of music like this, I crave logenvity with these bands, and fortunately, Kamlelot is kind of just starting out, and Thomas Youngblood is obsessed with making music with this band, so I hope there is music making from these guys for as long as my ears work. Long live Kamlelot.

    Posted on December 10, 2009 - Permalink - Buy Now
  • _Epica_ is the long awaited sixth album from Kamelot, and their fourth with former Conception vocalist Roy Khan. I believe they are by far the best European-styled power metal band that has ever made music (it’s not gratuitous praise!). What makes Kamelot different from the rank pile of horrible power metal bands? For that matter, what makes them *amazing* instead of just good? The answer is very simple: Khan and Thomas Youngblood.Khan’s voice soars on eagle’s wings, his emotional power, unique timbre, subtle (Norwegian) accent, and perfect inflection make him not only the finest vocalist in this style, but nearly any other as well. Actually, I’m hard pressed to think of a male vocalist I like more than the mighty Khan. If you’ve read anything about _Epica_ in the hype before its release, one might consider it hopelessly pretentious for some “power metal” band to write an album based somewhat on J.W. Von Goethe’s _Faust_. Hmm… aren’t these bands the type that sing about saccharine love stories, saving the environment, and generally trite subjects (with horrid lyrics, no less)? There should be no worries, because Khan — in addition to being a prime singer — is an outstanding lyricist, full of evocative colors and depth and beautiful diction. _Epica_, a concept album about a man’s search for truth and meaning. Frankly, I think it is brilliantly done. Actually, the story is so interesting that I’m eager to hear Epica Part II even more just to find out what happens. For future reference: Epica > Mindcrime.In “The Center of the Universe”, Ariel questions the meaning of life and longs for truths in which he can support rationally. On “Farewell” he departs from his home, bidding goodbye to all his loved ones. However, his journey does not go as planned and in “The Edge of Paradise” he becomes disillusioned and lost, spiraling into an abyss of drug abuse. In his moment of sorrow, he thinks back to his love Helena in “Wander”. But, knowing she is just a memory now, he loses his will to live. Then, in “Descent of the Archangel”, the dark angel Mephisto appears to him and tempts him with vanity. Mephisto brings Ariel to his castle where he satisfies all of his base desires in “Feast for the Vain”. After, Ariel meets with Helena and spends a special moment with her in “On the Coldest Winter Night”. On “Lost & Damned”, Helena goes to tell Ariel of her pregnancy, but he tells her that his search for truth is more important than love. He also fears to be with her after succumbing to Mephisto’s temptations. Helena then drowns herself in the river, killing not just herself but her unborn child. Ariel tries to reconcile with this loss in “The Mourning After”, but he is deeply scarred. On “III Ways to Epica”, Ariel — torn between the evil Mephisto and the angelic Helena — is left to continue the journey he began at the beginning. The Khan-Youngblood songwriting core is easily the best in this style. As befits an album with such a title, _Epica_ is Kamelot’s most epic sounding release to date. The roster of guest musicians rivals that of a Rhapsody album, with the songs weaving soaring symphonic elements into the driving punch of the band’s melodic-metal style. Choruses are simply HUGE, melodically sublime and powerful, and the urgent build-up to them via the verses is spine-tingling. Youngblood’s thick crunchy guitar sound is toned back a bit, woven through keyboards and strings. Layers of synthesizers throughout many songs recall the atmospheres the band created on “The Spell” from _Karma_. As always, numerous influences from different eras and regions manifest throughout, but what is especially impressive is how smoothly integrated the diverse elements are. Even in songs with pronounced influences, like the Arabic motif and Gregorian chanting of “The Edge of Paradise” or the Parisian tango of “Lost & Damned”, everything is fastened together so organically that it took me several listens to notice them. “Descent of the Archangel” is foreboding and ominous, with eerie menacing verses and a fierce chorus propelled by 16th note double bass drums and machine-gun guitars. Rhapsody’s Luca Turilli contributes a frenetic guitar solo in this song.I think few bands execute a ballad with the beauty of Kamelot, and _Epica_’s ballads are no exception. “Wander” is a summery magenta flush of longing — sheer perfection. While “Wander” refers to summer, “On the Coldest Winter Night” is frostier and darker. A simple plucked guitar figure feels like cold snowflakes on the skin, with a deep double bass adding to the weight of the moment. The djembe adds a sort of earthy warmth to the chill atmosphere, like the heat of the love between Ariel and Helena in that moment the song describes. Co-producer and keyboardist Miro deserves credit here on both these songs especially, his brilliant string arrangements sensually and subtly adding emotion without going over-the-top. One thing Kamelot has over any of their peer bands is subtlety. (Kamelot proves there is nothing inherently cheesy about power metal — it’s a matter of the artist, not the style.)Gorgeous is the fey voice of guest singer Mari, who plays Helena. In “Helena’s Theme”, she sings exquisitely with the Rodenburg Symphony Orchestra for the album’s prettiest moment. Some of the most chilling parts are where Khan and Mari trade-off lines, as in the piano-based interlude in “The Center of the Universe” and the epochal chorus of “III Ways to Epica” (best chorus, like, ever).The limited edition has beautiful packaging and features a bonus track called “Snow”, a speedy cut which would have fit nicely onto _Karma_. This is an amazing release which tops even the amazing _Karma_, which was so good I thought they would never beat it. It’s almost scary to think how good this band might still become. _Epica_ is a pure masterpiece that should render a hopeless feeling of impotence upon all other power metal bands. Kamelot is beyond everyone.

    Posted on December 10, 2009 - Permalink - Buy Now