DELIVERANCE - CAMELOT IN SMITHEREENS REDUX DELUXE EDITION (Re-Recorded) (TAPE, 2022, Retroactive)
- 2021 Complete Re-Recording of the 1995 Camelot in Smithereens classic on Intense Records
- Mastered by Rob Colwell of Bombworks Sound
- Layout by NoLifeTil Metal's Scott Waters
- Featuring All-Star cast of Deliverance alum - George Ochoa, Manny Morales, Mike Phillips, Glenn Rogers, Larry Farkas
- Masterful cover art by Robert Steel
- Available on Vinyl, Collector's Cassette, and 3-Disc Deluxe Edition, Single CD
- Limited to just 100 Collector Cassettes
ABOUT THE ALBUM
Originally recorded in 1995 and released on Intense Records, Camelot in Smithereens blended bits of thrash with technical progressive metal. Deliverance vocalist and band leader, Jimmy P Brown II always lamented that the final version of the album was far from what his original vision entailed. According to Deliverance frontman, Jimmy Brown II, "The Camelot story embodies a lot of allegory, but it's an important tale! It can, and will mean different things to different people. I know what it means to me, and I am truly glad that after these years it can be revealed to you!"
Camelot tackles some courageous and vulnerable subject matter, like depression, sexual misconduct, questioning of one's faith, and seeking God. The songs sort of have an emotional ebb & flow that begins with posing the question of "Where are you?" to God, followed by a recounting of some negative things going on in the protagonist's life, followed by a series of songs talking about the daily struggle between purity & sin, and wrapping up with an ending that takes the approach that no matter what comes in life, we are to look to God for hope, answers, and ultimately salvation.
In 2021, Jimmy Brown and company took on the task of re-recording the album from the ground up, and Jimmy wrote a book as a companion piece so Camelot finally reflects the original intention and vision intended for this classic album. Only the Deluxe Edition includes the entire book + the CD of Camelot Redux + Camelot (1995 remastered) + DVD (band footage and interviews). On par with the greatness of Queensrÿche - Operation: Mindcrime (yes, we are serious), Jimmy Brown and the band have gifted fans with a true treasure of artistic and musical brilliance - sheer, unadulterated brilliance. Only 100 cassettes available.
2021 CAMELOT REDUX
1. The Glass Asylum
2, Somber Theme
6. Not Too Good 4 Me
8. The Foreward
9. Book Ends
10. Beauty & The Beast
11. The Fear
12. Make My Bed In Hell
13. Onto the...
14. The Red Roof
15. Rest Now
DOWN THE LINE ZINE REVIEW OF Deliverance – Camelot MMXI
Camelot-in-Smithereens was originally released in 1995, a year after the band’s acclaimed River Disturbance. Camelot did not surface well as a fan favorite, lacking a cohesive strong mix as found more prominently in the bands prior couple albums. Fast forward to 2017, Jimmy Brown created an Indiegogo campaign to resurrect Camelot to its originally intended conception, which would include re-recorded music, a physical book, voice theatre for the album’s story line, and a DVD. The campaign fell short of its goal. Thankfully, the band voyaged on to launch what has turned out to be a masterpiece.
Listening to the re-recorded version coupled with the original, the re-recorded is a vast improvement. Bass lines are now clear and beefy and Jimmy’s vocals are better nuanced within the whole production. The guitars are tuned differently on the re-recorded songs, and the tones are more layered and expressive. While I like the drum sound on the re-recorded version, I have a sweet spot for the thrash drumming on the original mix. The re-recorded drums are played integrally for technical metal and they serve the re-recorded songs better. The voice theatrics threaded between song tracks compliment the album well with a more realized storyline. Like Lebowski’s floor rug, they really tie it together!
Paralleling the mythical Camelot, this story locates itself in a community that sadly allowed falsities and scheming to fragment the lives of those serving it. The narrative is centered in a lady named Lyndsay, who is given a new start in life and is embraced by a thriving church. She gives her heart to a man groomed to be a powerful leader. After discovering she is pregnant with his baby before tying the knot, she becomes entrenched in hypocrisy and has to leave community she had embraced. In the end Lyndsay finds redemption and hope but not without a cost. The story is riveting and beautifully told.
There are some powerfully aggressive tracks like Somber Theme and The Red Roof, divulging in crushing guitars and soaring vocals. The track Lindsay delivers in an abrasive and brooding fashion, with an incessant amount of roaming bass. The guitar lead is psaltery with a goth influence. Anymore is also anchored in goth-infusion, a metal ballad one can get lost in. Book Ends centerpieces the story and is nothing short of a cultivating progressive power ballad. The guitar work is reminiscent to Michael Schenker’s to my ears.
Beauty And The Beast is a David Bowie cover from the Heroes album. Bowie even gets worked into Lyndsay’s story, adding more layers of novelty. The re-recorded version of this song adds funky key lines, imparting a playful affect overall. Next up, Make My Bed in Hell lifts the vocals up a few decibels from the original mix, making a substantial difference. The track is based around Psalm 139…“Where can I go from your spirit? Or where can I flee from your presence?” The emotive guitar and fluid chorus contend for a highlight on this project.
In-U closes Camelot in elegant form, with part ambient, part progressive metal. Jimmy’s vocals expand a wide range and impart a message of hope.
Camelot, which stands on its own with memorable and griping songs, has achieved a much needed come back. To be honest, I missed its significance when it originally came out, and am incredible stoked it has made a monolithic return twenty-seven years later. Well done, band!
--Doug Peterson, Down The Line zine