Welcome to the LOUDEST DOT COM ON THE PLANET!
KNAC.COM
LISTEN NOW!WATCH NOW! LOGIN
KNAC Magazine KNAC KNAC Downloads KNAC Contests KNAC Store
Reviews

Opeth Damnation

By Death Chronicle, Contributor
Wednesday, April 16, 2003 @ 12:55 AM


(Koch Records)

- advertisement -
There is sadness in beauty. And there is beauty in sadness. Opeth are painfully aware of the bittersweet balance between the two, and the fragile necessity of finding release through the pain of expression in order to appease the agony of silent suffering. Such things are evident in their 7th and latest experimentation Damnation, a melodic masterpiece of lost love, betrayal, hopelessness and the incredible beauty that is born from the ashes of such acute suffering.

Rarely has there been a band that has been able to express emotion so empathically that the listener is overwhelmed with a sincere sense of loss so precise that it could have been their own. Opeth are absolute magicians in this sense. The music creates an ethereal, melodic atmosphere, forsaking speed and technicality for the simple beauty of heartfelt melody. Filled with acoustic rhythms, the occasional clean electric fills to complete the mood and the exceptionally beautiful solos you’ve come to expect from this band, the music alone is enough to induce a sense of sorrow and a strangely comforting feeling of acceptance of such a state.

This album also presents the most drumming freedom I have yet to see exercised on an Opeth album. To contrast the simple yet precise flow of the guitars and bass, Martin Lopez becomes a vital -- at times, driving -- factor in the flow of music. A truly superb effort by a very talented drummer, the album is abundantly full of pace setting high hat rhythms and irregular drum beats to keep any sense of monotony from setting in. Making various appearances on the album is Mikael Akerfeldt’s close friend and Porcupine Tree frontman Steven Wilson, who provides some great atmospheric feels, courtesy of a Grand Piano and Mellatron. He also contributes some incredible backing vocals on several songs, which compliment Akerfeldt’s beautiful vocals to absolute perfection. Add to that the lyrics for the song, “Death Whispered A Lullaby,” and you have some pretty serious contributions by a phenomenal musician.

This brings us to the lyrical aspect of the album, which like all Opeth albums, is the most amazing facet of this band’s unparalleled talent. Mikael Akerfeldt delivers some of the saddest and most heartfelt lyrics I’ve ever heard. One is easily able to discern the source of the album title, “Damnation,” when listening to the various tales of forsaken loss -- as though Damnation is the only gift to be gained in living this life. Songs like, “In My Time Of Need,” “Hope Leaves,” “Weakness” and “To Rid The Disease” eloquently convey profound misery and loss and a sorrowful sense of resignation to a doomed state of existence. “At times the dark’s fading slowly, but it never sustains. Would someone watch over me in my time of need. Close to ending it all, I am drifting through the stages of the rapture born within this loss, Thoughts of death inside tear me apart from the core of my soul.” Anyone who has endured lost love, betrayal or sorrow of any sort should find some sort of release or cleansing through the beauty that Opeth have found in the grips of dark suffering. Certainly even Damnation itself can set you free.

There are only two issues with the album that could possibly have a negative effect on any listener, the first being that each song is uncharacteristically short. After 6 masterpieces with songs in average of 10 to 15 minutes in length, we find the longest song to come in at a mere 7:44, with the average song running from 4:00 to 5:30. This may tend to leave the listener craving the extended musical journeys Opeth has navigated us through in the past. The second is a sub-par instrumental called “Ending Credits,” similar in feel to “For Absent Friends” from the Deliverance album (which should be of little surprise -- Damnation was recorded during the same session). A mere 3:39 seconds, it leaves much to be desired. Overall, however -- this is yet another musical masterpiece, presented in a flowing, encompassing contradiction of beauty and sorrow as only Opeth can capture.

Track listing:

Windowpane*
In My Time Of Need*
Death Whispered A Lullaby*
Closure
Hope Leaves
To Rid The Disease*
Ending Credits
Weakness

(* Masterpieces of the album)

* * * * ½


Please log in to view RANTS

If you don't have a username, click here to create an account!

Username: 
Password: 

Message: 
 
 

 





 Recent Reviews
CRADLE OF FILTH Existence Is Futile
BEAST IN BLACK Dark Connection
MASSACRE Resurgence
DREAM THEATER A View From The Top Of The World
JAY JAY FRENCH Twisted Business: Lessons from My Life in Rock ‘N’ Roll
BLACK LABEL SOCIETY, PRONG And OBITUARY In Portland, OR With Photos!
GEMINI SYNDROME 3rd Degree - The Raising
DORO/WARLOCK Triumph And Agony Live
BETWEEN WORLDS Between Worlds
ALCATRAZZ V
BEHEMOTH Sventevith (Storming Near the Baltic) Reissue
ALICE COOPER, ACE FREHLEY In Nashville, TN With Photos!
CARNIFEX Graveside Confessions
BLOOD RED THRONE Imperial Congregation
GUS G. Quantum Leap
BILLY IDOL The Roadside EP
AVATAR, MAGIC SWORD In Houston, TX With Photos!
APRIL WINE, MONKEYJUNK At The Ottawa Bluesfest
MINISTRY Moral Hygiene
CRYPTA Echoes Of The Soul
SKILLET In Houston, TX With Photos!
Immortal Axes: Guitars That Rock Book
IRON MAIDEN Senjutsu
GRINDER BLUES El Dos
GEORGE LYNCH Seamless Review #2
IN THIS MOMENT, BLACK VEIL BRIDES In Houston, TX With Photos!
WARLANDO Festival 2021 Photo Gallery
KISS In Ridgefield, WA With Photos!
LAURENNE/LOUHIMO The Reckoning
TREMONTI Marching In Time
ROCKLAHOMA 2021 Day 3 Photo Gallery
ROCKLAHOMA 2021 Day 2 Photo Gallery
ROCKLAHOMA 2021 Day 1 Photo Gallery
CARCASS Torn Arteries
SETH La Morsure de Christ





HOME | MAGAZINE | ON-AIR | DOWNLOADS | CONTESTS | STORE | HELP

©2021 KNAC.COM. All Rights Reserved.    Link to us    Advertise with us    Privacy policy
 Latest News