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Opeth - In Cauda Venenum CD (album) cover

IN CAUDA VENENUM

Opeth

 

Tech/Extreme Prog Metal

4.15 | 376 ratings

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BrufordFreak
4 stars As my esteemed colleague siLLy puPPy stated in his review of this same album, the OPETH sound has never been one to draw me into the fold of Opeth lovers (or haters, for that matter). I totally respect and admire Mikael Åkerfeldt's tremendous talent and commitment to progressive rock music--it's on a par with that of prolific stalwarts STEVE HACKETT, STEVEN WILSON, and ROINE STOLT. And I completely recognize the masterful performance skills of all musicians involved, I'm just not drawn back to any Opeth music--songs, albums, periods, or styles. It all washes over me--wows me while I listen, but then I'm done, I leave and move on.

"Heart in Hand" is the standout song for me. It's awesome! It kicks some ass and haunts me like the ear-candy of Terry Jacks or ABBA. I happen to like the Swedish version better because I can't understand a word the singer is singing which plays perfectly into my disability of only hearing voices as other contributors to the overall weave of music--as creators of threads of linear melody making, just like another instrument. (I cannot sing the entire lyric of any song--even my favorite songs from childhood--because I do not have a compartment in my brain for the comprehension of their meanings). Still, the heavy first half and the gorgeous sensitive second work for me! Some of the others feel/sound like other OXYGEN radio play bands or like Grunge era classics, Jimmy Page acoustic stuff. I also like the subtle intricacies throughout "Continuum."

The hard-drivin'/heavy vs. soft/delicate interplay is okay once or twice but in every song (sauf the opener)? Not even Pearl Jam can get away with that! There are no bad songs, not even any "bad" sections of songs--I even enjoy/smile at the forays into new and unusual musical styles Mikael has the band explore (á la GINO VANELLI-like "Garroter").

1. Garden Of Earthly Delights (3:29) (7.5/10) 2. Dignity (6:37) (8.75/10) 3. Heart In Hand (8:30) (19/20) 4. Next Of Kin (7:10) (12.75/15) 5. Lovelorn Crime (6:34) (8.25/10) 6. Charlatan (5:29) (8.5/10) 7. Universal Truth (7:22) (12.25/15) 8. The Garroter (6:44) (13/15) 9. Continuum (7:23) (13.5/15) 10. All Things Will Pass (8:31 (8.25/20)

All in all this album sounds like a more complicated, more mature form of early 1970s URIAH HEEP.

86.96 on the Fishscales = B/four stars; an excellent addition to any prog lover's music collection despite the Jeckyll and Hyde musical circles it leads one in. Try the Swedish version, it's great!

BrufordFreak | 4/5 |

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