Opeth: From Death Metal to prog…..

Opeth is in my opinion a fantastic band, and has delivered a lot of music over the years, and pleasantly enough, very, very much really amazing music. In this article, I want to tell you about the band and maybe come up with something not everyone knows about Opeth?

Opeth is the name taken from the novel Sunbird by author Wilbur Smith and was originally spelled Opet. In the book, Opet is the name of the location for an ancient empire which translates to City Of The Moon. Official track Ingen Sanning Är Allas (Universal Truth) Swedish version from Opeth`s thirteenth album, In Cauda Venenum.

Some people would probably consider Opeth as a pure Melodic Death Metal band, but that is too easy to say. The Stockholm band feature a lot of different elements on their albums. We have the aggressive Death Metal with Mikael Åkerfelts’s growls, which actually are not generated with help of a computer, it’s actually his voice with lots of breaks, mostly acoustic including his clear voice. Mr. Åkerfeldt himself always underestimates his clear voice and often points out that he is a novice regarding this kind of singing. But that’s wrong his clear voice is warm and simply beautiful.

Opeth`s  music is guitar orientated, on the one hand we have great riffing for aggressive parts, awesome melodic solos and on the other hand acoustic breaks with admirable melodies even with some Scandinavian folk influences here and there and of course Åkerfeldt`s clear vocals. Sometimes you even get some Pink Floyd and Porcupine Tree like parts or whole songs. Steven Wilson from Porcupine Tree have collaborated with Opeth, and inspired the band to have many progressive elements and very little metal elements. The track Sorceres,

Opeth started with childhood friends Mikael Åkerfeldt and Anders Nordin founded the band Eruption 33 years ago. first practice room was in a cellar in Sörskogen, playing mostly death metal covers. After two years of practicing the band became complete, and they started writing their own material. The band never amounted to anything though, except for a few rehearsal tapes and disbanded in 1990.

After the break-up of Eruption, Åkerfeldt met David Isberg, who had a band called Opeth. Isberg wanted Åkerfeldt to join as a bass player, which led to an argument with the other band members. They left, and only Åkerfeldt and Isberg remained in the band. They completed the line up with Anders Nordin, Nick Döring, and Andreas Dimeo. Opeth was not a successful band back then, and even played some poor gigs. Musicians come and goes and with a stabil line-up with Åkerfeldt, Isberg, Kim Pettersson and Johan De Farfalla the band have some success. Åkerfeldt wrote a song called Poise Into Celeano which sounded less like the standard death metal they had been playing, and more like what makes Opeth well known in later years.

At this time, Åkerfeldt became the vocalist, and Anders Nordin joined Opeth and both he and Åkerfeldt started to write descent songs, and four years before the new century finally Opeth began to gain recognition in the metal community. In 2000 an important event happened when Åkerfeldt met Steven Wilson! Wilson was asked to produce the album Blackwater Pak, and this was very smart, and the recording process lasted in 7 weeks. Opeth gained much success from Blackwater Park, and they went on their first headlining tour of Europe and US. The track Blackwater Park,

Then the musical mastermind Åkerfeldt got an incredible good idea from Katatonia front-man Jonas Renkse! Two separate album, one heavy, and one soft. They recorded the albums Deliverance, Damnation , as if it were only one album, not two! Wilson helped on this album as well. The album Watershed was released 2007, and is the last album with death metal growls!

In 2011 the Opeth saga continued, and again Steven Wilson was the producer, and this time the album is entitled Heritage. That album is a dratic change in style from their previous albums, adopting a mostly progressive rock sound. In 2011 the very talented Joakim Svalberg joined Opeth as the band’s new keyboard player. On the next album Pale Communion from the songs was even proggier than ever. There are at least two ways to consider where Opeth do on Pale Communion! Either Opeth completely abandoning their roots OR as a damn good prog rock album!? The track River,

Four years ago Opeth founded their own label, Moderbolaget Records. While Nuclear Blast will still handle their releases, they will from now on be licensing them from the former. In the same year The Book Of Opeth their official biography was published: The book chronicles the band’s history up to 2014’s Pale Communion, featuring interviews with past members and manager Andy Farrow.

The album Sorceress was released four years ago, and and last year the album In Cauda Venenum was relased.


Om Ulf Backstrøm (6684 Artikler)
Mitt hovedfokus er musikk som er basert på progressiv tenking. Jeg er på ingen måte ensporet innen musikksmak, i likhet med intensjonen bak prog. Sjangerbegrepet er egentlig temmelig uinteressant annet enn til å gi en pekepinn om hva slags musikk det er snakk om i en anmeldelse. Jeg søker god musikk for å utfordre meg som lytter. God musikk til å trigge mine musikalske smaksløker, og til å sette i gang mine refleksjoner. Da er sjansen stor for at jeg utvikler meg og lærer, noe som bør være drivstoff for et hvert menneske. Fordi det å lære og utvikle seg er noe som tilfører livet en nødvendig porsjon "krydder". Slikt krydderet finner man blant annet i musikk. Ikke overraskende mener jeg at progressiv musikk har den fineste "smaken". På den annen side kan musikk med eller uten progressive elementer være godt nok til hverdags. Til fest derimot holder bare rendyrket prog! Må jo også få med at jeg rimelig kritisk, og jeg mener at det lages mye prog som er i beste fall uinteressant, og faktisk mye som er pinlig dårlig. Heldigvis oppveies dette av ekstremt dyktige aktører som for eksempel: Flower Kings, Mostly Autumn og White Willow, for å nevne noen tilfeldig valgte.
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