Review Summary: This will grow on you, only if you take the time to listen to it in it's entirety. A Great CD by an Epic band.
Opeth, a band that many have either come to love or hate, especially with the long anticipated release of this new CD “Watershed.” This CD has a lot of bright spots as well as a few flaws, and seeing as I’m doing an Opeth reviews, I will get criticized for things I might like about the band and others might not. With that being said, lets move on to the actual review.
As far as melody comes along in this CD, you’ll get a lot of it. Starting with the opening track “Coil”, even through most of the tracks and ending with “Hex Omega”, you will notice a lot that the organ, or some variation of that mixed with a lot of MIDI stuff has made this album seem less dark, and more of a progressive album (there’s nothing wrong with that, as either with this band sounds good).
Opeth is known for the Akerfeltd signature growls and the pounding riffs in their music, and the tracks that show this are “Heir Apparent”, and “The Lotus Eater”, with the latter being more of the song that makes you confused when you listen to it. “Heir Apparent”, is no doubt the heaviest song on the album, with it being arguably one of Opeth’s best songs to date, because it shows everything Opeth is about, dark, melodic eerie bridges, and just straight in your face riffs.
The singles, “Porcelain Heart” and “The Lotus Eater” are two of a different style that Opeth has done, with Porcelain Heart being the song that gets you into the CD but makes you scratch your head because it by many peoples’ standards it isn’t up to par with all of Opeth’s work. “The Lotus Eater” is my favorite song on the CD, not only cause of the epic solo that Fredrik does, but just because the all around song just keeps driving forward as time goes by, and the band as a whole just clicks as they play the song, almost no flaws whatsoever in my opinion.
As far as the rest of the album goes, “Hessian Peel” is something Opeth has approached differently and done VERY well. The very soft opening guitar riff is something you will be wanting to play for months later, and the heaviness in the riffs during the latter part of the song as well as the solo will just make things sound dark and gloomy, then 20 seconds later, it will sound sort of on the hopeful side, making the song and album interesting, progressing, if you will. “Burden” is the song that sounds like a ’70’s song, but well done, metalheads might not like it as much if they’re looking for distortion, face melting riffs, as I’ve already mentioned what songs on the album can provide that.
Overall, you might not be impressed with Opeth’s new work, but as you listen to it, it WILL grow on you, as Mikael Akerfeldt has taught his new guitarist and drummer well. I thought this was terrible to their previous releases, but I now prefer it over Blackwater Park and Still Life. I personally think this is a step in the right direction for the band, as they can only get better while still keeping their trademark sound.
The Lotus Eater