Opeth
Damnation


4.5
superb

Review

by Shadows USER (89 Reviews)
September 24th, 2006 | 80 replies | 9,334 views


Release Date: 2003 | Tracklist

Review Summary: It was expected that Mikael Akerfeldt would eventually expand upon his love of 70's progressive rock through Opeth. What wasn't expected was one the metal world's most unique and emotional albums of all time.

12 of 12 thought this review was well written

At some point in our lives, we all encounter a feeling of sorrow. Those who have encountered some particularly difficult times in their lives can especially relate. Damnation is defined as the state of being condemned to eternal punishment in Hell or condemnation to everlasting punishment. How would you react to such a thing? Many emotions may initially come to mind…anger, resentment, misery, and confusion spring to mind. Most of us, considering the nature of the damnation, would immediately sink into a state of depression. This state of melancholy produces the darkest, most discouraging thoughts possible in one’s life and mind.

Damnation is the perfect title for Opeth’s seventh album, an experimental record delving into the band’s interest in 70’s progressive rock. Damnation is the musical embodiment of the feelings one experiences while shunned in such a way. Throughout the gloomy clean guitar riffs and melotronic effects, There is a wound that's always bleeding , There is a road I'm always walking , And I know you'll never return to this place echoes eloquently amidst the music. No artist has ever created such a beautiful yet hauntingly perfect incarnation of a terrible emotion.

As vocalist/guitarist Mikael Akerfeldt always held great interest in 70’s progressive, this album was a long time coming. Mikael favors his soothing, clean singing voice over his ferocious growls for the full 43 minutes. With help from good friend and famed producer Steven Wilson on tracks such as Death Whispered a Lullaby and Weakness, Damnation was given a flavor that past Opeth albums had never seen. Songs range from bluesy to melancholic with great variation in between. One of the best traits of Opeth has always been their ability to create sounds that invoke deep thoughts and images, almost on a spiritual level. On a personal note, this album above all others has affected me greatly. Listening to the melodies and words have made me contemplate who I am as a person, where I’m going, and why I’m here. It’s made me think about my relationship with someone very special to me and was a great incarnation of the emotions I felt when that person left.

The music of Damnation is a low, subtle sound with steady drum and bass rhythms, complimented with guitar melodies and primarily the voice of Mikael. The entire album is based mainly around his voice aside from the songs Ending Credits, a blues/rock instrumental (I IV V just never gets old), and Weakness, an ambient song created with Wilson’s melotrons. At times the entire band comes together in songs like Windowpane and Closure to create a gentle yet incredibly powerful sonic force with a wide array of styled results. The former of those also excels in creating simple yet beautiful guitar harmonies and melodies with a largely instrumental basis. In between, the album features the haunting track Hope Leaves, arguably one of the saddest songs ever written in this century. In My Time of Need and To Rid the Disease complete the package with a somber yet serene soundscape of melodic riffs and rhythmic choruses.

Damnation is unlike anything any metal band was thought capable of. At the end of the last song, if no part of the album has hit you emotionally, you weren’t listening.



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user ratings (2976)
Chart.
4.2
excellent
other reviews of this album
1 of

Comments:Add a Comment 
CanonInD
September 24th 2006



359 Comments


this album is mmm mmm good

Chu
September 24th 2006



7 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Excellent review, does the album justice

Shattered_Future
September 24th 2006



1539 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Ben, this may be the best review you've ever written. Nobody could have done it better.

There's nothing better than this album to listen to when it's nice and quiet around, and it's late at night. It's unbelievably beautiful.

Thor
September 24th 2006



10176 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

I guess this will be replacing my review...

Shadows
Moderator
September 24th 2006



2530 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5 | Sound Off

I wouldn't say that, it's just an alternate view.

[QUOTE=Shattered Future]Ben, this may be the best review you've ever written. Nobody could have done it better.

There's nothing better than this album to listen to when it's nice and quiet around, and it's late at night. It's unbelievably beautiful.[/QUOTE]
Amen to that! It's nice to see you Mike, it's been a while. And you come with such kind words. :D

I love all of you guys. Seriously.This Message Edited On 09.24.06

Pwntendo
September 24th 2006



70 Comments


You love me too, right?

:upset:

CanonInD
September 24th 2006



359 Comments


oh and also this review is mmm mmm good too

Drunken Viking
September 24th 2006



1023 Comments


That's it, I must download this immediately!
Awesome review man.
[QUOTE=Thor]I guess this will be replacing my review then.[/QUOTE]
:lol: This Message Edited On 09.24.06

Shadows
Moderator
September 24th 2006



2530 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5 | Sound Off

Takk skal du ha, herr Viking. I swear on my forefathers' graves you shall not be disappointed.

[QUOTE=Pwntendo]You love me too, right?


:upset:[/QUOTE]
Of course, I love you all.This Message Edited On 09.24.06

Drunken Viking
September 24th 2006



1023 Comments


[QUOTE=] Takk skal du ha, herr Viking.[/QUOTE]
Jesus you write your best reviews drunk. Haha.

Dethtrasher
September 25th 2006



2211 Comments

Album Rating: 1.0 | Sound Off

I love Hypocrisy's depressive stuff so I guess I have to pick this up too. Great review and may I correct you in your last comment just a little bit. ''Tack Ska Du Ha'' is more accurate though, but anyone who understands swedish would understand what you just wrote.

suspect
September 25th 2006



16 Comments


Ehm, he said it in norwegian you swedish meatball. The infinitely more cool language then swedish.

wikuk
September 25th 2006



1110 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I could say that this review is very short... But I don't since this is one of the best reviews here on Sputnik

Shadows
Moderator
September 25th 2006



2530 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5 | Sound Off

Suspect is right Robin, I was talking Norwegian. You were close. :p

[QUOTE=wikuk]I could say that this review is very short... But I don't since this is one of the best reviews here on Sputnik [/QUOTE]
:eek:

The ultimate compliment! Thanks a lot, I appreciate things like that.

Dethtrasher
September 26th 2006



2211 Comments

Album Rating: 1.0 | Sound Off

Haha, I forgot about that language but it means the same anyway. Norwegians sounds so happy just because of their language.

Shadows
Moderator
September 26th 2006



2530 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5 | Sound Off

I like Norwegian. Swedish is one of the more unattractive languages I've heard, unfortunately.

And by the way Robin, Opeth is as Swedish as you. :D

Dethtrasher
September 27th 2006



2211 Comments

Album Rating: 1.0 | Sound Off

I know , there are many metal bands from Sweden and most of them are death-metal. Btw, is this album a calm and melodic one?

Cravinov13
September 27th 2006



3854 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Yes it is, it's actually comparible to Porcupine Tree in many ways.

Shattered_Future
September 27th 2006



1539 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Well, considering that Steve Wilson did a HUGE freaking part of making this album as good as it is, there's bound to be similarities.

Cravinov13
September 27th 2006



3854 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

That, and he produced many of their albums and he and Mike are tight friends.



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