Monday, 24 October 2011

OPETH - Heritage (CD+DVD)

I just love the way Opeth have developed. I didn’t care for their old death metal records, but did felt they had a lot of great potential musically. Then, when things started going towards the more progressive side I started listening. Deliverance, I think was the album that made me really listen. After this they have just started growing album by album. The last one, Watershed, as as close to perfect as they had ever come in my book. Now, Heritage is here, and they have dropped the growling altogether, the music is as intricate as ever and there are so many moods and feelings floating around on this album it would make even Ingemar Bergman jealous. The album starts off with a soft piano piece that could have been written by Jan Johansson back in the seventies. Soft, tender and lovely. The piano is played by guest musician Joakim Svalberg. They move into the multi-layered The Devil’s Orchard, which touches on fusion, jazz, but still rests on a heavy, slightly dissonant, proggy/symphonic foundation which brings it forward without stopping. I Feel The Dark starts off softly with just acoustic guitar and vocals, adding piano, mellotron and later on drums and electric guitar, but still not in an overpowering way, not until halfway through when the pandemonium enters. This is definitely an album you just don’t put on and wash the dishes to. It’s quite demanding and challenging, and I really like that! This is an album that gives me something new each time I listen to it. It’s all so well thought out, each part and instrument has a meaning. Nothing is random. What I also like is that the album goes though so many different moods and styles, from the aforementioned piano piece, to fast paced prog metal in Slither (recorded in memory of Ronnie James Dio), to the soft and gentle acoustics in Häxprocess and Famine, where Björn J:son Lindh adds his flute magic against a pretty heavy backing. The Lines In My Hand shows another different, very melodic side, still highly progressive and odd rhythmic, but with nice melodic harmony vocals. This is in my opinion the band’s strongest effort so far, the most challenging, but also the most rewarding. Finally, I must give credit to the cool 3D cover, which really adds an extra dimension, plus the bonus-DVD containing the 5.1 surround mix, bonus tracks and a documentary.

Janne Stark
Label: Roadrunner
Year: 2011
Country: Sweden

1 comment:

  1. I absolutely love these guys. What a great show. It arrived on time and was in great shape. I love to watch and listen to this group. They are great.


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