Original Portuguese version on World Of Metal.
When both Vagos Metal Fest and Amazing Events posted on Facebook “last tickets at the door”, I confess I thought it was just a marketing strategy to draw the public. But when I arrived at Hard Club, about fifteen minutes before the doors were opened, and the queue already made a turn along the corridor, I realized such “last tickets” were a reality – which made me really satisfied as KAMELOT aren’t exactly a “trendy band” and all these people, who screamed the lyrics at the top of their lungs, are proof the expression “follow the herd” doesn’t apply.
Six albums and sixteen years later, KAMELOT were back in the Douro river margins – not in Porto, as Tommy Karevik said, as the gig in question (May 26th, 2003, with AT VANCE and ORATORY – yep, I was there!) took place at the original Hard Club and that one stood in Gaia. But we were still on the second song and the level of euphoria was already so high that no one bothered to correct the singer.
The setlist wasn’t very different from Vagos Metal Fest‘s the previous year, one of the two changes being the ballad “Here’s To The Fall” (dedicated to every close person we’ve lost in our lives), providing strong emotions – and an army of cellphones up in the air. This lighting was by Karevik‘s request, but something tells me it would have happened anyway. And speaking of cellphones, at a time when everybody was talking about JUDAS PRIEST–Rob Halford reaction to one in particular, Karevik did exactly the opposite: in the middle of a song, while singing, he signaled someone on the front row to hand him their phone and filmed himself and the rest of the band before returning it to its owner (who was probably still stunned by what had just happened).
Such awe seemed to be shared by KAMELOT regarding the response they were getting. More than once did Karevik praise the Porto crowd for being “loud!” and Thomas Youngblood (Mr. KAMELOT himself) used the same word later on. The “final test” would be “Forever”, when we all made the usual vocal exercises that Karevik put us through plus one by our own initiative, as we thought that screaming “KA-ME-LOT!” to the drum beats of “We Will Rock You” would sound cooler than the QUEEN‘s hymn. It would have been a perfect way to end the show, but we were still entitled to listen to “Liar Liar (Wasteland Monarchy)” before going home, with an ear-to-ear smile.