Kamelot and DragonForce at the Ogden – Concert Review

By Published On: May 29, 2015Categories: Music

On Tuesday, May 19, I was lucky enough to snag a press pass for the Kamelot and DragonForce concert at The Ogden in Denver, Colorado. Wow, what a show. Both bands came out swinging with epic power metal riffs and amazing vocals. I’ve loved and listened to both bands for years. If you have a chance to see this show when they come back to the states in November, I highly recommend that you see it. I want to give a shout out to Freeman Promotions for being kind enough to get eciov a press pass.

In typical Colorado fashion, weed was all over the venue. That’s something I’m used to smelling at Red Rocks but not at The Ogden. Honestly, at times, it got a little overwhelming. I’m not anti-weed, but this was an “all-ages” show; it shouldn’t be hazed over with mary jane. I don’t know if I’d blame the fans for bringing it or the venue for letting it slide. Maybe this is just the new face of music in Colorado. I certainly hope not. If you want to get high at a concert, please show some respect for the people around you and eat an edible. If I catch you smoking weed next to children… I’ll throw you out myself.

I’ll hop off my soapbox and get to the real reason you’re all here: the review. You probably just want to see the photos, but I always write a little something to go along with the shots.

DragonForce at the Ogden in Denver

It’s cliché to mention Guitar Hero, right? That’s where I first heard DragonForce. I spent hours trying to master their riffs (on a plastic controller). It gave me a deep appreciation for Herman Li and Sam Totman. They are the founding guitarists… and they shred like crazy. They’ve been the foundation of DragonForce since the beginning. Over the years, the band’s made a few notable changes. Vadim Pruzhanov took over the keys early in their history. Frédéric Leclercq took over as the bassist almost 10 years ago. Marc Hudson tagged in for lead vocals in 2011. Most recently, Gee Anzalone took over as their drummer in 2014.

Let’s talk about Marc and Gee since they’re the most recent additions to the band. You’re hopefully familiar with everyone else at this point. I’m not sure where Marc Hudson got his chops, but that man makes me want to pick up a microphone. Unfortunately, I’ll never sing as well as he does. DragonForce did almost an hour-long set during this show, and I never heard his voice waver once. He’s been fronting the band for about four years now. From what I saw, it seemed like he’s been doing it for decades. It must be the skinny jeans.

The same goes for Gee on the drums. He was animated, locked in, and had killer locks. You could tell that he enjoyed playing with the band. Keep in mind: they play some of the fastest, most complex songs in power metal history. A lot of that complexity falls on the hands and feet of the drummer. It amazes me when anyone can keep this genre together. I’m a novice drummer who struggles to lock in a syncopated rhythm. When you upgrade to this level of complexity, I’m humbled.

What can I say about the rest of the band? They’re a bunch of power metal gods who play music my brain could never create. I love them for it. Out of everyone, Frédéric was certainly the most animated member of the band. You’ll see that in the pictures. Other than that, the guys put on a great show. If you want to find out more about them, check out their website and snag their most recent album on Amazon.

Kamelot at the Ogden in Denver

I’m a relatively new Kamelot fan. I first heard of them when they toured with Nightwish in 2012. I’ve never seen them with anyone but Tommy Karevik as the lead singer. I’m okay with that though. I’ve spent plenty of time listening to their back catalog and can honestly say that I like the newer albums better. Silverthorn and Haven are (in my opinion) two of their best albums. It was great to hear them do stuff from the brand new album. Tommy also did a great job with their “classic” songs.

Haven, as an album, feels like some of the best music this band has produced. They guested Charlotte Wessels from Delain and Troy Donockley from Nightwish. Check out our review of their concert here. Those two guests are great choices. Kamelot and Nightwish share very similar themes throughout their music. I fell in love with Charlotte’s voice when I heard her singing here in Denver. The album isn’t only about the guests. It’s a great glimpse at Tommy’s comfort with the band as a whole. In the album, and on stage, he’s shown that he’s settled into Kamelot.

The rest of the band was just as great. Thomas and Sean really set the energy level high with their guitar and bass work. Casey buried himself in his drums (in a good way – his set is amazingly large). Oliver laid into the keys with the passion of a vampire. I loved his outfit. It was awesome and creepy at the same time. That said, I love how much the band understands aesthetic. From wardrobe to album art, they’ve always found beautiful artistic expressions of their music. Other bands should take note; it’s tremendously important for hardcore fans. We want something tangible and beautiful to add to our collections. Check out the Haven micro website to see how much detail they put into the album release.

I also have to mention Linnéa Vikström. What a beautiful distraction. She did a great job as the background singer. Personally, I would’ve liked to see more of her. Beautiful person; beautiful voice. I tried to get a few pictures of her, but only ended up with a couple good ones. She’s not officially credited anywhere on Kamelot’s website or Wikipedia page, so check out her Facebook if you’d like to follow her. She’s one to watch.

Overall, the show was a great entry in the power metal history books. DragonForce and Kamelot put on breathtaking shows that you definitely wouldn’t want to miss this fall. Check out their tour schedule and get to one of their shows.

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