Kamelot are in the middle of recording their 12th studio album and I’m sure everyone wants to hear an update from them! Kamelot Germany had the chance to ask Thomas Youngblood a few questions – enjoy the read!
Kamelot Germany: Hi Thomas! Thank you for your time to answer us some questions!
Thomas Youngblood: My pleasure!
KG: How are you guys doing? We hope you get some well-deserved downtime despite the songwriting, after all the touring for your last album ‚Haven‘.
TY: Haven was our longest and most prolific tour in our history, its been an amazing 2 years and although things seem quiet, we are busy with the new album. Every album is important and we will put everything into it.
KG: ‚Haven‘ was amazing and the band toured, as I already mentioned, a lot since it’s release. What are your thoughts on the last two years?
TY: Haven has reached a lot of new audiences and as a result we were able to tour more cities than ever. Our base in Europe is strong and loyal and we never take that for granted. Also, the United States and Canada is bigger than ever and we are so pleased to reach out to more music fans and welcome everyone into the fold. Japan is also a country we love to tour and we had our first SOLD OUT Tokyo show on the Japan Tour.
KG: Did you guys enjoy the 70,000tons of Metal Cruise earlier this year? I hope no one got seasick!
TY: This was without a doubt one of our favorite shows on the Haven Tour. First, the response from the crowd was awesome. We also took more time to enjoy the ship and everyone had a nice room on the ocean. I cannot say enough about Andy and the entire 70,000 Tons of Metal staff and crew. No one got seasick, just a few hangovers. I hope we return in the next few years, maybe 2019 would make sense!!
KG: It’s so cool to hear you will be playing with Iron Maiden again. I’m sure it’s always something very special!
TY: Yea!! We are very psyched about the upcoming Maiden show, with Ghost as well. It will be our 3rd or 4th time playing with Maiden, and the fans have been really great for Kamelot. I think we have some similar threads that Maiden fans relate to.
KG: Are there any more concerts or festivals planned for this year?
TY: There are some talks about doing some shows in Russia later this year. I remember our first time playing Moscow and we loved the Russian fans. I hope the recent political issues do not affect our chances to make these shows happen.
KG: How is the writing for the new album going?
TY: I just returned from a second round of songwriting with Oliver, and we have around 15 solid song ideas. We will now start working on the details and decide which ones are the best for the album. So far the demos are really sounding heavy and melodic. I spoke to Sascha Paeth last week regarding the recordings, co-songwriting, production and possible special guests. It’s still an exciting process for me, even after many years of doing this.
KG: ‚Silverthorn‘ had been a concept album about a story set in the past, ‚Haven‘ is more loosely put together and talks about the state of the world today. Do you already have ideas about a theme for the new album?
TY: We are discussing this now, will the new album be a concept or not? Not sure yet…once we discuss song topics, ideas, direction, we will know for sure. I think many of our albums have some thread throughout, whether it’s a long story or series of stories that convey a feeling or topic. On Haven, we had a dystopia vision and the songs all worked into this direction. I feel the new material has some of the Haven vibe, but with new ideas and elements. As a writer I need to feel growth and evolution.
KG: It’s always exciting that parts of the writing process are happening in Stuttgart – my hometown. And you did some sightseeing here! What was your favorite place to see in and around Stuttgart so far?
TY: First, I love Germany. It’s been one of my second homes along with Norway. I stayed in Böblingen while working on Haven and the new album. It’s very close to Stuttgart and Oliver’s home studio. I try to immerse myself into the city, including speaking as much German as I can in the shops and stores. Sometimes it works, sometimes I get a blank stare. Haha. On my recent trip to Stuttgart I visited the Mercedes Benz Museum, its very impressive and I would recommend anyone to visit this place.
KG: You added really cool new merch items to your web-shop (EU Shop, US Shop) recently like the stickers and the new dog-tags. I’ve seen Kamelot sunglasses on a Facebook post – will those be available too?
TY: We are ramping up our merch selections and I hope we will add even more. The sunglasses were made for the 70,000 Tons of Metal cruise, we added them to the US Merch site. I will check with our EU Store if they can make some as well.
KG: There have been hints about a new video coming out a while ago. Can you tell us more about this?
TY: We are working on something but I can’t say anything more than that for now. It will be something fans will love, and will have a guest. 😉
KG: Any other interesting news for the Kamelot Nation that I forgot to ask? We all can’t wait for the new album and to see you guys back on tour!
TY: Tours are being planned for 2018, we already have the dates for North America set for April/May 2018. We also have a new booking agent in Europe, one of the biggest in Europe. So we will have more festivals and the plan for the European tour will be something that is another step visually for the fans. Very exciting times and we can’t wait to see everyone at the shows. I miss you guys and girls!!
KG:That’s it! Again – thank you very much for the interview, Thomas!