Sunday, June 9, 2013

June 9th, 2013 - A Black Cream Stout Halo

Dark, multi-layered, and wonderfully rich.  A power metal-rock opera/concept album based loosely on Johann Wolfgang von Goethe's Faust about Ariel.  An ale thick with flavor, complexity, and depth.  This is Kamelot's 2005 album "The Black Halo."  This is Samuel Adams Cream Stout.   This pairing goes out to my buddy over at Progressive Power!  Cheers my friend!!

Samuel Adams Cream Stout is smooth and silky.  Dark roasted malts, milk chocolate notes, toasted caramel notes, Columbian coffee notes, a hint of smokiness, and a sweet toffee finish... all characteristics of this easy drinking stout.  It pours a rich ebony with a 1-finger mocha head.  The nose is earthy, chocolaty, rich, and laced with coffee bean goodness.  The flavor is big, bold, and as rich as the aromas.  There are notes of milk chocolate, baked bread, and thick cream that linger for a good spell on the tongue.  All-in-all, a very good, very solid stout.

Quite possibly Kamelot's greatest album, "The Black Halo" is pure symphonic/melodic/power metal magic!  From the first note of "March Of Mephisto" to the ending of "Serenade," every element of this album is enchanting, mesmerizing, and fucking brilliant!  This is the songwriting that made me a life-long fan of this band!  Roy Khan's vocals are beautiful, haunting, and full.  Thomas Youngblood's guitar work is at times ethereal and at others... well, a full-on metal onslaught!  Casey Grillo's drum work is big, bold, and booming.  And former member Glenn Barry's bass is a perfect foil to the rest of the band's intensity.  Guest vocalists Shagrath (Dimmu Borgir), Simone Simons (Epica), and Mari Youngblood are absolutely wonderful, especially coupled with Khan's amazing and emotional range.  The duet on "The Haunting (Somewhere In Time)" with Simons alone gives me chills with each and every listen.  Such an amazing, amazing, amazing album!!  And Wikipedia has a pretty good synopsis of the album, song by song if you are interested:


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