Saturday, September 27, 2008

Kamelot - Epica

Kamelot is a progressive/symphonic power metal band from Tampa, Florida. So far they have released 8 studio albums, 1 re-issue, 2 live albums, and one live dvd. The vocal force behind Kamelot, Roy Khan, joined the band after 2 albums. Their 6th and 7th studio albums, namely, Epica and The Black Halo are the only "concept" albums. Both are based on Johann Wolfgang Von Goethe's "Faust". The plot is almost the same (not disclosing), the characters name changed. The whole story is divided into two, hence the two concept albums. Epica seemlesly blends into The Black Halo. I tried my best to interpret the whole thing. Some parts I couldn't. :S

Epica

Characters

1.
Ariel - Also known as Faust. In Kamelot's world, Ariel. Now, Ariel is a scientist/researcher/philosopher I believe. He seeks answers to questions which science and religion have failed to give. He seeks the universal truth. And also, he is God's favorite man.

2.
Helena - The only girl Ariel has ever loved. She is everything that's good and pure, personified.

3.
Mephisto - An archangel cast out from Heaven. When God ordered all the angels to bow before mankind, Mephisto refused, for he was only loyal to God. He yearns to be with God now.

So here it goes, song by song. Hope you enjoy. Make sure you go through the lyrics.

1.
Prologue (1:07)

No lyrics in here. An eerie track. Sort of spooky. Couldn't make out anything. In Faust's prologue, God and Mephisto make a bet. If Mephisto can take the soul of Ariel, God's favorite man, he will be granted a place in Heaven. But if he fails, he will be condemned to hell forever.

2.
Center Of The Universe (5:27)

Move slowly
Beyond the colors of my eyes
Move slowly
Into the corners of my mind
Rising like the Pegasus
Each and every one of us
Released
Islands in the sea of dreams
Always searching harmony
And peace

All we find
Reject our mind
Don't you wonder why

If the war by heavens gate released desire
In the line of fire someone must have known
That a human heart demands to be admired
Cause in the Center of the Universe
We are all alone

Show me sign of paradise
A place we all would like to go to
Tell me what to sacrifice
So there's a chance for me to want you

All I find
Reject my mind
And I wonder why

I have a tale to be told won't you listen tonight
Follow me into the core of the fountain of light
Try to imagine that hope is our ship for the soul
(Over the ocean the quest of your life lies ahead)
Maybe together we'll find there's a place for us all
(Follow the star in your mind, sail along sail along)

Interpretation :

In this song, we are introduced to Ariel's thirst for knowledge, his "always searching" mind.

Islands in the sea of dreams
Always searching harmony
And peace

A dreamer. Searching for answers.

If the war by heavens gate released desire
In the line of fire someone must have known
That a human heart demands to be admired
Cause in the Center of the Universe
We are all alone

He believes, at some point, at the verge of death, someone must've known the truth. "In the line of fire someone must have known". In his homeland, the center of the universe, without the truth, he feels alone.

Show me sign of paradise
A place we all would like to go to
Tell me what to sacrifice
So there's a chance for me to want you

He's willing to sacrifice anything to go to that place, to know the truth.

I have a tale to be told won't you listen tonight
Follow me into the core of the fountain of light
Try to imagine that hope is our ship for the soul
(Over the ocean the quest of your life lies ahead)
Maybe together we'll find there's a place for us all
(Follow the star in your mind, sail along sail along)

Here he decides that the answer is not in his homeland, but somewhere else. The lines in ( ) are sung by a female. And she tells him to go on a quest, a journey, to seek the truth.

3.
Farewell (3:41)

Winter's close...and the mountain high
I'll start my journey now
On this planet we call Earth we belong
I want to know
Why did God make me feel
There is more to be answered
Maybe God cannot remedy
Our souls if he tried
I seek peace of mind at least
And to know I did my best
I will pray for those I have loved

I must take your farewell
Carried by destiny
Bound to obey

I must take your farewell
Trails of discovery
Lead me an ocean away

No one holds the only truth in his hand
So who am I
To defy even God
In quest for a reason
There's no time to waste I'm afraid

I must take your farewell
Trails of discovery
Lead me an ocean away
So far away

When the tide is high
I won't dwell or wait no longer

Interpretation :

In this song, Ariel sets out on his journey, and bids farewell to everyone he has known. And also rejects God.


Winter's close...and the mountain high
I'll start my journey now
On this planet we call Earth we belong
I want to know
Why did God make me feel
There is more to be answered
Maybe God cannot remedy
Our souls if he tried
I seek peace of mind at least
And to know I did my best
I will pray for those I have loved

Ariel sets on his journey/quest right before winter. He wonders why God made him feel that there is more to be answered in this life. He sets out on the journey, leaving everyone behind, even Helena. "I will pray for those I have loved"

No one holds the only truth in his hand
So who am I
To defy even God
In quest for a reason
There's no time to waste I'm afraid

He rejects/defies God, for God has left so many questions unanswered.

I must take your farewell
Trails of discovery
Lead me an ocean away
So far away

When the tide is high
I won't dwell or wait no longer

The final goodbye. He sails on.

4.
Interlude I (Opiate Soul) (1:10)

An instrumental with some italian gibberish and Ariel trembling, cold most probably. I couldn't understand. One thing I could. "Opiate Soul", the title. An Opiate is a drug derived from the Opium plant. So during his journey, he turns to herbs/drugs. How do I know? Track number 5.

5.
Edge Of Paradise (4:10)

Sleepless
Not really quite awake
Where the soul conforms
To deeper needs
Free within frames of custody
I revolve my spirit and exhale

On the edge of paradise
Poison burning
In my veins
Unavailing...compromised
My dreams remain the same

Soothing but yet so violent
In this world within the other world
Moonlight...in visions...heaven sent
I see demon eyes and wings unfurled

On the edge of paradise
Poison burning
In my veins
Unavailing...compromised
My dreams remain the same

On the edge of paradise
Powerless
I sail on by
Undermining life itself
My will to wonder why

Interpretation :

Ariel, tired of the fruitless journey, turns to herbs/drugs. And under the influence of these drugs, he sees Mephisto, just a vision, he still isn't sure though. And he has no idea about the bet. Hopeless, he still seeks the truth.


Sleepless
Not really quite awake
Where the soul conforms
To deeper needs
Free within frames of custody
I revolve my spirit and exhale

Clearly, he's high. "Sleepless. Not really quite awake".

On the edge of paradise
Poison burning
In my veins
Unavailing...compromised
My dreams remain the same

Poison be the drugs here. The drugs in his veins. But still, his dreams, the universal truth, remain the same, unfulfilled.

Soothing but yet so violent
In this world within the other world
Moonlight...in visions...heaven sent
I see demon eyes and wings unfurled

Here, Ariel encounters Mephisto, just a vision though. Mephisto seems soothing, yet so violent. More like an evil angel. "Heaven sent, Demon eyes, wings unfurled."

On the edge of paradise
Powerless
I sail on by
Undermining life itself
My will to wonder why

He stills want to know the truth. And he sails on.

6.
Wander (4:24)

I recall one summer's night
Within the month of June
Flowers in mahogany hair
And smell of earth in bloom
Only such a melody
Comes without a sound
More than faintly heard by those
Who know what they have found
Now it's just a memory

Silently we wander
Into this void of consequence
My shade will always haunt her
But she will be my guiding light

Silently we wander
In search of truth and confidence
So many hopes were lost here
Along the way
From morning to night

Meet me by the wishing well
In cover of the moon
Whisper to me tenderly
That I will see you soon
Sing that song from long ago
So I remember you
Flowers in mahogany hair
And mellow days in June
Only for the memory

From ashes we were born
In silence we unite

Interpretation :

Ariel, alone and hopeless, reminisces about Helena. He gives up his search. And prepares to take his own life.


I recall one summer's night
Within the month of June
Flowers in mahogany hair
And smell of earth in bloom
Only such a melody
Comes without a sound
More than faintly heard by those
Who know what they have found
Now it's just a memory

Ariel talks about the time he spent with Helena. And the love they shared. "More than faintly heard by those, who know what they have found". But now, in his darkest hour, it's just a memory.

Silently we wander
Into this void of consequence
My shade will always haunt her
But she will be my guiding light

He wanders, hopeless and aimless. He thinks about her all the time. "She will be my guiding light"

Silently we wander
In search of truth and confidence
So many hopes were lost here
Along the way
From morning to night

Same thing, but then again, he also knows that the path is difficult. "So many hopes were lost here"

Meet me by the wishing well
In cover of the moon
Whisper to me tenderly
That I will see you soon
Sing that song from long ago
So I remember you
Flowers in mahogany hair
And mellow days in June
Only for the memory

One word. Longing. He's dying to get back to her. "Mellow days in June"

From ashes we were born
In silence we unite

This is where he prepares to take his own life.

7.
Interlude II (Omen) (0:41)

A very soft and mellow instrumental, thunders in the background.

8.
Descent Of The Archangel (4:36)

(((Mephisto)))
Speak my friend
You look surprised
I thought you knew
I'd come disguised
On angel wings...in white
I can make
Your dreams come true
What a couple...
Me and you
On journey through the night

I will show you everything so vividly
You can't deny me

Bathed in moonlight
I'm proclaimed by angels cry
Think well
Do take your time
Because your soul
Will be mine the day you die

Name a pleasure
One...a few
Any form
Of lust in you
Will tremble at my touch
I come down from heaven's light
I have all the perfect alibis
There's so much...

Call my name or carry on
Till that last resistance' gone
I'm sure we'll meet again

I'm your true disciple
When the flesh desires
You won't deny me

Interpretation :

This is Mephisto's song. His descent. Here, he tells Ariel that he can make his every dream/wish come true. But only at the cost of Ariel's soul. He gives him time to consider the offer. But he's sure Ariel will agree. Close your eyes and listen to this song, and you can really see Mephisto's descent.


Speak my friend
You look surprised
I thought you knew
I'd come disguised
On angel wings...in white
I can make
Your dreams come true
What a couple...
Me and you
On journey through the night

Here we see Mephisto trying to convince Ariel that he can make his dreams come true. "I thought you knew", in reference to Edge Of Paradise. Mephisto seems all so angelic here.

Bathed in moonlight
I'm proclaimed by angels cry
Think well
Do take your time
Because your soul
Will be mine the day you die

Mephisto talks about the deal here. He will fulfil his every dream/wish. But once Ariel dies, he will keep his soul. Gives him the time to think.

Name a pleasure
One...a few
Any form
Of lust in you
Will tremble at my touch
I come down from heaven's light
I have all the perfect alibis
There's so much...

Mephisto is still trying hard to convince Ariel.

Call my name or carry on
Till that last resistance' gone
I'm sure we'll meet again

Resistance here refers to Ariel's hesitation to sign the deal with Mephisto.

9.
Interlude III (At The Banquet) (O:31)

(((Ariel)))
His invitation was clear
I shut my eyes...and now I'm here

(((Host)))
Please make way,
our host is making his entree.

Interpretation :

Ariel is sort of transported to Mephisto's palace/castle. The whole mood of the song is upbeat, joyous types."His invitation was clear, I shut my eyes, and now I'm here"


10.
A Feast For The Vain (3:58)

(((Mephisto)))
Everyone is here
The feast can soon begin
Vanity we celebrate
My favourite of sins

(((Ariel)))
Chandeliers so grand
That heaven sees the shine
And my friend declares
Everything I look at could be mine
It's a miracle
Life till now has been a waste
You have proved to me
By your hand I'm truly graced
Unbelievable
Gold and glitter blinding me
So adorable
All these women from my fantasies

(((Mephisto)))
Come with me my little ones
Let's revel for the free
Raise your glass and praise the fact
How easy life can be

(((Ariel)))
In the splendour of the night
I've found company
Once again I feel that life's begun
All the wrongs seem to be right
Drowned in ecstasy
Every star is like a newborn sun

May the life I knew be gone
I accept the deed
But one point we have to modify
If I wish to linger on
In a state of still
Only then I'm yours the day I die

Interpretation :

Mephisto's castle. So full of everything. All the worldy pleasures. Ariel is definitely awe-struck. Everything just seems so perfect. Ariel accepts his offer. But he makes a modification, a change. If at some point, at some moment, he feels that he has found the answer, the truth, and he wants to stay in that moment, then only he will give his soul away. Mephisto agrees.


Chandeliers so grand
That heaven sees the shine
And my friend declares
Everything I look at could be mine
It's a miracle
Life till now has been a waste
You have proved to me
By your hand I'm truly graced
Unbelievable
Gold and glitter blinding me
So adorable
All these women from my fantasies

Ariel is truly awe-struck. It's a miracle. Women, gold and glitter. It's everywhere. Everything that he ever wanted.

May the life I knew be gone
I accept the deed
But one point we have to modify
If I wish to linger on
In a state of still
Only then I'm yours the day I die

Ariel accepts the offer/deal. But modifies the deal a bit. If he wishes to stay in a moment, where he'll find his answers/truth/happiness, then only Mephisto can have his soul. Mephisto agrees.

11.
On The Coldest Winter Night (3:58)

I am breathless,
Need I say
How could you find me here?
You, of all, have crossed my way
Unexpectedly...from where?
I feel like I am dreaming
Hold me close,
Tomorrow may be gone

This is a moment of belief
This is a moment made of dreams
You found me here today
On the coldest winter night
This moment is our right

Now, Helena tell me all
The years we've been apart...
Did you hear the mountain fall?
...my broken heart
Don't wake me if I'm dreaming
Hush, my dear
Because tomorrow may be gone

Lost in the present, I am sure
This is the moment, say no more
You found me here today
On the coldest winter night
This moment is our right

Interpretation :

After leaving Mephisto's castle, Ariel runs into Helena, who has been searching for him all this time. The love is still there, warm and strong. They both spend the night together and during this night, Helena conceives Ariel's child, though neither is aware of this.


I am breathless,
Need I say
How could you find me here?
You, of all, have crossed my way
Unexpectedly...from where?
I feel like I am dreaming
Hold me close,
Tomorrow may be gone

Ariel is surprised and breathless. Never thought he'd run into his lost love. It all seems like a dream to him.

This is a moment of belief
This is a moment made of dreams
You found me here today
On the coldest winter night
This moment is our right

Ariel is happy to be with Helena.

Now, Helena tell me all
The years we've been apart...
Did you hear the mountain fall?
...my broken heart
Don't wake me if I'm dreaming
Hush, my dear
Because tomorrow may be gone

Love is all around. Ariel doesn't want to wake up from this "dream". Because he might not be there tomorrow. During this night, Helena conceives Ariel's child.

12.
Lost & Damned (4:55)

Helena you came to me
When seemingly life had begun
Little did I know then
Where this would go
When this begun
Once I was free to fly...
I never promised anything
This may well be goodbye

Don't ask why
Don't be sad
Sometimes we all
Must alter paths we planned
Only try understand
I want to save you
From the lost and damned

Although you hold me close
I feel retention arise
Just as a hint of fear
Like subtle clouds
In summer skies
Once in the moonlight...
I can't explain
And I don't know
Somehow we may reunite

Don't ask why
Don't be sad
Sometimes we all
Must alter paths we planned
Don't forget what we had
But let me save you
From the lost and damned

Love means nothing to me
If there is a higher place to be

Helena don't you cry
Believe me; I do this for you
Heed my decision now
I will be gone tomorrow noon
My tale has just begun
Nothing can take my faith away
In my quest for the sun

Don't ask why
Don't be sad
Sometimes we all
Must alter paths we planned
Leave me behind, don't look back
Because deep within you know
I'm lost and damned

Interpretation :

The "break up" song. Ariel tells Helena that they can't go on. They have to part ways. Tells her not cry. He's trying to save her by letting her go. He knows that the deal with Mephisto might prove painful for Helena. His actions may hurt her. He loves her, but he holds his quest/answers much higher than the bond they share.


Helena you came to me
When seemingly life had begun
Little did I know then
Where this would go
When this begun
Once I was free to fly...
I never promised anything
This may well be goodbye

Helena came back into Ariel's life when his life had begun, as in, life after signing the deal with Mephisto.

Although you hold me close
I feel retention arise
Just as a hint of fear
Like subtle clouds
In summer skies
Once in the moonlight...
I can't explain
And I don't know
Somehow we may reunite

Although they are together, but there is hesitation. Ariel is confused.

Don't ask why
Don't be sad
Sometimes we all
Must alter paths we planned
Don't forget what we had
But let me save you
From the lost and damned

He asks her not to be sad. Tells her to cherish the memories. He wants to save her, from the pain, from his actions.

Love means nothing to me
If there is a higher place to be

Here, he values his quest/answers higher than the bond they share. He still love hers, but he wants her to go.

Helena don't you cry
Believe me; I do this for you
Heed my decision now
I will be gone tomorrow noon
My tale has just begun
Nothing can take my faith away
In my quest for the sun

He wants her to go. He's doing it just for her. He genuinely loves her. But then again, his quest is more important.

13.
Helena's Theme (1:51)

(((Helena)))
I remember a song
From long ago
Some of the pieces
They remind me of you
How could I know
You were to leave me
I thought that I was that melody
Oh so wrong
I'm but a whisper tonight

And if this is goodbye
I will leave
But I'll love you
Until the end

(((River Spirit)))
If the grace of God is real
And the word of Christ can heal
Bring their souls to heaven's light
Bless the unborn child tonight

Interpretation :

A very very VERY tragic song. Distraught, Helena promises that she will always love him, even in death. And drowns herself in the nearby river, and the child in her womb as well. The river spirit prays to God. Helena and the unborn child ascend to Heaven. One thing I noticed, the track number is "13". Evil and inauspicious. Her death.


14.
Interlude IV (Dawn) (0:28)

(((Town Crier)))
Hear ye hear ye! The lady
Helena has committed a sin.
Now death lies on her, like an
untimely frost upon the
sweetest flower of all the field...

Interpretation :

As dawn rises, the town crier anounces the death of Helena. Her body is found in the river. Her innocence/purity is portrayed so perfectly here. "Sweetest flower of all the field"


15.
The Mourning After (4:59)

I just had a dream
She was by the riverside
Alone and dressed in white
Paling in the cold
Walking on the icy face
On memories of glory days

Carry on
Carry on
Meet me on the other side
Once the mourning after turns to day

Carry on
Carry on
Keep on to the other side
The mourning after slowly fades

How could I have known
Just the thought is simply wild
In her womb...a little child
I am left to roam
On the surface of a dream
In a world that can't be seen

Carry on
Carry on
Just you carry on
Till the mourning is over

Carry on
Carry on
Just you carry on
Till the mourning after leaves

Interpretation :

In a dream, Ariel witnesses the death of Helena and the unborn child. Confirmed by the Town Crier, Ariel is bewildered. He grieves for them. But he must carry on with his quest. It would be a dishonor not to fulfil the quest for which he left her, and for which she took her own life. He carries on.


I just had a dream
She was by the riverside
Alone and dressed in white
Paling in the cold
Walking on the icy face
On memories of glory days

Ariel talks about the dream where he witnesses the death of Helena. She's dressed in white, and all alone. And the river is icy.

Carry on
Carry on
Meet me on the other side
Once the mourning after turns to day

Carry on
Carry on
Keep on to the other side
The mourning after slowly fades

He carries on with is quest and tells her to wait for him at the other side.

How could I have known
Just the thought is simply wild
In her womb...a little child
I am left to roam
On the surface of a dream
In a world that can't be seen

He had no knowledge of the unborn child and the thought that the child died along with her, drives him insane. Now he's all alone, wandering in a cold world.

16.
III Ways To Epica (6:17)

(((Mephisto)))
When you play with fire
You must anticipate some burns
Chasing for desire...
It's just a different way to learn

(((Ariel)))
I am defected from God
(((Helena)))
God had seized my soul
(((Ariel)))
So low redemptions too far
(((Helena)))
I am heaven's sheen
(((Ariel)))
She's the one that I loved
(((Helena)))
Love is all around
(((Ariel)))
And she tore me apart
(((Helena)))
The dark can never win

(((Mephisto)))
All that I require
Is some trust as the pages turn
I can take you higher
Cause your will is my concern

(((Ariel)))
So long...maybe forever
I must carry on
Why did God take away
That one thing I wanted
Maybe God is the melody
We all serenade

(((Mephisto)))
You would not feel sadness
If you never tasted joy
That's the curse of humans
Born in passion you destroy

Interpretation :

Now this is one epic song. The conclusion to the first part of Faust. And this album. In this song, Mephisto talks about the 3 ways to Epica, the place where Ariel can find his answers. The first way, the first lesson, teaches about how one can learn only from his own mistakes. The second lesson talks about trust. Although, it could be a trick. Mephisto asks Ariel to trust him, for Ariel's will is his concern, and he can take him to a higher place. The third lesson talks about happiness and sorrow. Sorrow is just as much part of life as happiness. And it's more like a curse on humans.


(((Ariel)))
I am defected from God
(((Helena)))
God had seized my soul
(((Ariel)))
So low redemptions too far
(((Helena)))
I am heaven's sheen
(((Ariel)))
She's the one that I loved
(((Helena)))
Love is all around
(((Ariel)))
And she tore me apart
(((Helena)))
The dark can never win

Here, Ariel blames God for everything. He is beyond redemption. He can't overcome the sorrow. He is the reason of her death. He truly loved her. Helena is now in heaven, "the sheen", the brightness, the luster. She says that love is the only truth and against it, darkness can never prevail.

The story of Epica ends here.


Ariel's search for truth landed him in a deal with Mephisto. Under this deal, Mephisto gives him power and all the worldy pleasures. In exchange, if Ariel ever experiences a moment in which he wishes to stay forever, Mephisto will receive his soul, thus granting him a place in Heaven.
Since Helena's death, Ariel has been overwhelmed with guilt and sorrow, leaving him in a very very weak state, a state of despair.

All Mephisto has to do now is claim Ariel's soul, in any way possible.
Helena, watches over Ariel.

What happens next is beautifully portrayed in The Black Halo. It's a very very dark album. And it's all the more epic.

Download the album here.


10 Comments:

Nabila Zehra Zaidi said...

WTF!!!

Fine... I like kamelot but that really does not mean I am reading this post... ITS FUCKING LONG... A FULL PAGE AMJAD!! haan...!! :O

Amjad Khan said...

This is part1. I'm working on part2.

I command you to read the whole post! :x

Nabila Zehra Zaidi said...

nnnnnnnaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhiiiiiiiiiiiiiii >>hema malini style<<

Amjad Khan said...

I was so expecting something like that.

But! You will read the whole post! I command you to! :x

S1NN3R said...

*Yawn*

Amjad Khan said...

^^Thank you. :/

Ananya said...

I tried reading it. I tried. I really did. I will keep on trying until death.

Amjad Khan said...

I will wait for a 'genuine' comment. I will. I really will. I will keep on waiting until death. >.>

¢яŷştąŁ said...

Bitchgag!

Whore!


I got yr blog,you ass! :D


(You know who this is)

This album..mahn I know its gonna SUCK!


:D

Cheewwweerrs!! :P

Amjad Khan said...

Thank you for the erm...lovely comment :/