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Opeth - Heritage CD (album) cover




Tech/Extreme Prog Metal

3.82 | 1182 ratings

From, the ultimate progressive rock music website

3 stars In December 2011, I bought Opeth's then-latest offering Heritage. Prior to that I had paid little attention to the band. Perhaps because I was never a fan of death metal, and it would be very difficult for me to hear death metal growls without laughing. I bought this because I heard that Mikael Åkerfeldt had lost the monster growls and went a more prog direction. Actually this wasn't the first growl-free album they did, that goes to Damnation way back in 2002 (actually 2003, but was recorded during the same sessions as Deliverance, released six months earlier, but apparently record company politics prevented Damnation to be released together at the same time or part of a 2 CD set). So Damnation was basically a preview of what Opeth will be doing the following decade, some eight years before the decade actually began! No surprise that Heritage really disappointed many fans. Death metal vocals gone, a more prog approach. To be honest, I look back at it, and I felt the album really needed more room for improvement, as it frequently seemed disjointed. I own the two disc version on Roadrunner that includes the CD (with the gimmick lenticular cover, similar to the Stones' Their Satanic Majesties Request), as well as DVD that includes two bonus cuts (including the wonderful "Pyre", which has a nice psychedelic vibe and nice use of Mellotron flute). The DVD also included The Making of Heritage, and it clearly shows that their then-keyboardist Per Wiberg was using a real Mellotron, the M600, and they also openly admitted to using sampled Mellotron on previous releases. It's as you expect, sessions showing you how they recorded. Part of this was recorded at Atlantis Studios, which was formerly ABBA's Polar Studios. As for the album itself, it's not bad, but the flow seems quite disjointed. I do like the heavy prog approach they do here, but sometime memorable material went astray. This was to be their last album with Per Wiberg, who was replaced by Joakim Svalberg. In my opinion, if you don't mind that Åkerfeldt has dropped the growls, and don't mind the proggy approach they now do, I suggest Pale Communion or Sorceress, as they have certainly improved quite a bit on those two efforts, plus it has a much better flow. Still Heritage has some worthy material, but a three star is what I can cough up for this album.
Progfan97402 | 3/5 |


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