Review of Ayreon’s “The Theory Of Everything” Now at Sonic Cathedral


There are few musicians out there who create music that I’d call a “playground of sound.” Arjen Lucassen is one of those few. He’s the mastermind behind several progressive rock and metal projects, most notably Ayreon. And after a 5-year hiatus from Ayreon to follow other musical pursuits, Lucassen has returned to his signature rock opera with The Theory Of Everything, a story about ambition, greed, finding your life’s purpose, and solving one of physics’ most elusive equations. (And yes, the title is a direct reference to “The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy”!) Like past Ayreon albums, Theory stirs prog rock with heavy metal, electronic music, and folk influences; and features a host vocal and musical talent, including Marco Hietala (Nightwish), Cristina Scabbia (Lacuna Coil), Tommy Karevik (Kamelot / Seventh Wonder), and Troy Donockley (Nightwish). So, how is it different from its predecessors – and do those differences affect the listener’s experience with the album?

Click here to read my review of Ayreon’s The Theory Of Everything.

Below is a video trailer for The Theory Of Everything. It doesn’t feature any vocal snippets, but you’ll get a good feel for the music’s range and power. Have a look and listen!

Coming Soon: I may have an Open Mic Announcement in the next couple weeks. Otherwise, things are quiet on the outside right now, but productive behind the scenes. Stay tuned!

Five Years at Sonic Cathedral – A Retrospective, Part 4: Artists #5 through #1

We’ve reached the end of the Sonic Cathedral Retrospective countdown! I’ve been listing my 20 favorite artists that I’ve covered in my five years of writing at the Sonic Cathedral WebZine. And today, it’s time to reveal the top five – including the artist I chose for #1!

First, in case you’ve missed the previous installments, here they are:

Part 1: Artists #20 through #16

Part 2: Artists #15 through #11

Part 3: Artists #10 through #6

So if we left off at #6, that means we’ll start tonight with…

Continue reading

Blog Exclusive: Kamelot’s “Silverthorn” A Welcome Return To Form

With a new singer, the multi-national symphonic power metal band goes back to their comfort zone with renewed energy and confidence.

NOTE: I had intended to publish this review with Suite101 this weekend. However, the website is currently experiencing kinks and bugs that will make it impossible to publish the review there before the album’s release date on Tuesday, October 30th. So, I’m posting the review here instead. Enjoy! And feel free to comment about the album or my review below.


When Kamelot’s long-time frontman Roy Khan left the band in 2010, fans and critics alike were nervous. Khan was part of the band’s songwriting nucleus; and his deep, velvety voice had woven itself into Kamelot’s symphonic power metal trademark. What would his departure mean for the band? Would there be a drastic change in sound? And, would the new singer be able to rise above the metal world’s mountainous expectations? With Kamelot’s tenth studio album, Silverthorn, the answers to those last two questions are respectively – and firmly – “no” and “yes.” Continue reading

Kamelot Interview at Sonic Cathedral

Oh, am I thrilled to share this new article from Sonic Cathedral with you!

Kamelot have been one of my favorite bands for years. I bought (what I consider to be) their masterpiece, The Black Halo, in 2007 and was instantly smitten by their melodic, intelligent brand of power metal. But it wasn’t until last week that I went to my first Kamelot gig in Worcester, Massachusetts. The band was opening for Nightwish’s North American headlining tour. And Kamelot put on a fantastic set! They had so much energy and passion during their 45-minute set (which should’ve been longer!), and the entire crowd felt it. I already can’t wait for their own headlining tour next year.

Before the show, I sat down with new Kamelot frontman Tommy Karevik (center in above photo) for an interview. We talked about the Nightwish tour, Kamelot’s upcoming concept album Silverthorn, and the latest female singers to be featured in Kamelot’s songs (tying the interview in to Sonic Cathedral’s focus on female singers in rock and metal), among many other topics. It truly was a pleasure to talk to Tommy and to see in person how this softspoken young man with such a powerful singing voice is excited and humbled to be a part of this band.

Click here to read my interview with Tommy Karevik of Kamelot.

Another Sonic Cathedral article is coming very soon! Until then, have a good night.

~ Sara