Opeth
Morningrise


4.0
excellent

Review

by Shadows USER (89 Reviews)
August 7th, 2006 | 928 replies | 54,974 views


Release Date: 1996 | Tracklist


24 of 24 thought this review was well written

Occasionally, a band comes along that creates so much more than just musical sounds. That band takes you away to another place – a place that feels so peaceful it’s like a realm within your own spirit. It’s a place where you can explore your own mind, find out who you are as a person, and reflect on the events in your life that made you who you are. It’s bands like this that allow people to lay down, turn on the music, close their eyes, and think… almost contemplate the meaning of anything that means anything to you as a person. Make no mistake; these bands are an extreme rarity. It’s unfortunate that musicians like these don’t often gain a great deal of popularity because the music is often above and beyond what people expect of artists. Opeth is easily the greatest of all of these borderline spiritual artists. Their earliest works, most notably Orchid and Morningrise, are albums that provide an emotional escape from the world that surrounds us.

This escape is offered through different means. At times, it comes in the form of beautiful acoustic work with stunning sung vocal harmonies. Other times it comes from the tortured screams and harsh riffs with layered lead guitars that create a somber atmosphere. The riffs here on Morningrise are some of the most distressing yet most captivating in metal. From the galloping introduction of Advent, the sounds are grave yet pleasurable, a dangerously addictive combination in the metal world. Almost as a demonstration of the strength of the music, Mikael’s grandfather passed away sadly during the recording of The Night and the Silent Water, a song featuring incredible melodic electric/acoustic guitar interplay, written about death itself. The band had never been able to play it live until ten years later. Nectar features an almost jovial bass-driven start/stop guitar riffs, which precede another gloomy masterpiece. Throughout the song, guitars are harmonized with a beautiful sense of bereavement that nearly invoke tears. Black Rose Immortal, the band’s longest song (clocking in at 20:14), delivers a bombardment of savagely chugging riffs as well as the equally conflicting musical concordances by way of lead guitar. If nothing so far has invoked tears in listeners, the best is yet to come.

The essence of brutality evident throughout the record may account for much of the music, but the preponderance of the album’s strength and attributes delving into emotional effects spawn from the softest sound of Morningrise.

The acoustic passages present on Opeth’s second album far surpass that of their first. The interludes have become deeper, rich with atmosphere and emotion. Mikael Aferfeldt has taken his voice to new levels by improving his clean singing and employing more frequently throughout his music. Acoustic guitars open and close the song Advent with a gorgeous clean vocal harmony near the end. Acoustic guitars also back the rhythmic riffs of Nectar before taking the lead of the song’s sound. The epic and legendary song of the album, Black Rose Immortal, acquires some unconcealed acoustic folk interludes that nearly screams out their Nordic heritage. However, no mere interlude can match the emotion or incomparability of the two remaining songs. The Night and the Silent Watercreates the most ominous of atmospheres and mournful soundtracks with solemn distorted harmonies and dark acoustic strumming.

Finally, the album concludes with a song so moving and memorable it deserves a section all to itself. Opeth expected the record’s fifth track to be hated by their metal fans, but the song now remains one of the band’s beloved songs. It is the hard truth that no artist has or ever will write a song so overwhelmingly beautiful and emotional and Opeth’s To Bid You Farewell. Opening with a series of duel acoustic guitar riffs and leading into one of Akerfeldt’s most peaceful vocal performances, this song has fueled many to reflect upon themselves. With this one song alone, Opeth has accomplished the art of creating music that affects people in deeply profound ways. A clean guitar solo precedes the flowing into a gentle, bass-lead section with calming synth effects. The song concludes with a flurry of distorted riffs and the most heartfelt lyrics ever written in music.

There’s no sense in attempting to describe what makes something beautiful. Emotions are complex things that come in many forms. They are evoked in all sorts of ways, whether they are pleasurable or exasperating. It's not an easy things to channel emotions so proficiently into music, but it’s become obvious that this group of musically gifted Swedes has mastered the ability to put their feelings into sounds. These sounds have become the music of Opeth, which connects to people in such a way that there’s no doubt that the souls of Opeth's members are in the music they create.

Summary:
- Five songs filled with incredible acoustic work and harsh yet melodic guitar harmonies
- A step forward for Mikael's voice
- Indescribable qualities giving it a dreamlike quality

Personal favorite moments:
- Advent (8:53) – Mikael's clean “survey the slopes” harmonized singing
- Black Rose Immortal (1:54) – folk guitar interlude
- Any part of To Bid You Farewell

Recommended tracks:
- Advent
- To Bid You Farewell

So few tracks, all of them high quality. You can't go wrong with any of the songs from Opeth's Morningrise.



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user ratings (1850)
Chart.
4
excellent
other reviews of this album
1 of
  • Ire (0.5)
    ...

    Jgpj95 (4)
    Often an overlooked album due to the band's latter success "Morningrise" offers a look int...

    Darkvoid67 (4)
    It may be a taxing listen with 5 songs stretching over 60 minutes, but Morningrise is more...

    AvantKiller (3)
    Despite it's an unfocused album, that suffers from a bad the band solved and improved in t...

  • Sp1cyMart1n1Man (1.5)
    'pethy's second album, consisting of 5 big, dumb, overblown, aimless metal "songs" about.....

    chimera908 (5)
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    ...

    Distorted Vision (5)
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Comments:Add a Comment 
Cravinov13
August 7th 2006



3854 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Dang. Two Opeth reviews at once? You inspire me to do reviews in clusters and not one at a time. They're both great reviews. I think Morningrise is amazing. Especially Black ROse Immortal. I don't own Deliverance yet. :[

Shadows
Moderator
August 7th 2006



2530 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I think in a way Deliverance and Morningrise are very similar. They both have very few tracks, all of which are quite long. Deliverance is more like a much darker, more refined version of the Morningrise sound.

Thanks for the compliment. I don't know why I never review one at a time...just a compulsion of mine I guess. :p

Kage
August 7th 2006



1173 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

[QUOTE=ShadowsFallen]I think in a way Deliverance and Morningrise are very similar. They both have very few tracks, all of which are quite long. Deliverance is more like a much darker, more refined version of the Morningrise sound.[/QUOTE]
You pointed that out in the reviews, which I thought was an interesting topic. I've never looked at it that way, but I suppose when you do, you can see that Delieverance is far superior in maturity of songwriting than the haphhazard, yet admittedly atmospheric, Morningrise.

mjjm1184
August 7th 2006



16 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Great album. Black Rose Immortal is probably my favorite track.

Great review.

Hatshepsut
August 7th 2006



1997 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Aha! I found it. Great work, this is a great album. Don't listen to it much though, my ears have been preoccupied with Still Life. Still. Some power metal but still, Still Life rules all.

Shadows
Moderator
August 7th 2006



2530 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Strangely, Still Life is easily my least favorite Opeth album.

But thanks a lot people, I think this is a criminally overlooked chapter in Opeth's career.

Cravinov13
August 7th 2006



3854 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I think Blackwater Park is the best by far.

FlawedPerfection
Emeritus
August 7th 2006



2806 Comments


I love Still Life.This Message Edited On 08.07.06

Hatshepsut
August 7th 2006



1997 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

How dare you :mad:
Oh well. BP is second on my list. Damnation is growing on me a lot though. To Rid the Disease ftw.

FlawedPerfection
Emeritus
August 7th 2006



2806 Comments


^If you're referring to me, I quoted ShadowsFallen thinking ti said it is his favorite Opeth album, not his least favorite. Then I edited.

Shadows
Moderator
August 7th 2006



2530 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

My favorite Opeth album is ver hard to pinpoint. I'd say it's either Ghost Reveries or Orchid with Blackwater Park and Damnation very close behind.

Mikesn
Emeritus
August 7th 2006



3709 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

I have Morningrise. I don't listen to it all that often, but it's an interesting album. Great review too.This Message Edited On 08.07.06

Hatshepsut
August 7th 2006



1997 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

No, ShadowsFallen said Still Life was his least favorite Opeth album, and I said how dare you, seeing that it's one of my favorite albums of all time.

Shadows
Moderator
August 7th 2006



2530 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Sorry, but Still Life just doesn't tickle my fancy like other Opeth albums do.

(heart) MikesnThis Message Edited On 08.07.06

Thor
August 11th 2006



10168 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Glad to see we have another person who can't get enough of To Bid You Farewell.

NovaReaper
August 23rd 2006



4 Comments


This is my favorite Opeth album, tied with Orchid. It was a nice addition to the review for you to comment on the dreamlike qualities of the album. I personally think that the heavy but not downtuned distortion also adds alot to the "dreamlike" qualities, along with Johan's bass playing. Listen to the dual guitar harmony at 13:38 in Black Rose Immortal. Pure genious.

FRUGiHOYi
October 6th 2006



6 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Amazing album. The Night and The Silent Water was the first Opeth song I ever heard and after that, I just had to hear more. That song is so emotional and although it contains death metal growls/screams and distorted guitars, it still seems more like a ballad than a metal song to me. One of my favorite Opeth songs. To Bid You Farewell is another one of my favorite songs of all time. Black Rose Immortal has one of my favorite Opeth riffs at 13:38. Advent is killer and so is Nectar. This album is a classic.

Shadows
Moderator
October 6th 2006



2530 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Definitely a milestone in Opeth's catalogue. It still had the under produced metal feel of Orchid, but here they really started to refine their songwriting into something more "progressive". Not that Orchid wasn't, but Morningrise sounds much more like their modern style.

Kage
October 6th 2006



1173 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

It's nothing short of abhorrent.

Thor
October 25th 2006



10168 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Your face is abhorrent.

Ben, why isn't The Night and the Silent Water one of your highlights? It's better than Advent I think, and one of Opeth's best old-school songs.



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