Opeth - Orchid review


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Band: Opeth
Album: Orchid
Release date: May 1995

01. In Mist She Was Standing
02. Under The Weeping Moon
03. Silhouette
04. Forest Of October
05. The Twilight Is My Robe
06. Requiem
07. The Apostle In Triumph
08. Into The Frost Of Winter [2000 and 2003 re-release bonus]

Opeth's debut album Orchid released in 1995 is a keeper. It isn't mentioned much by Opeth fans but it is certainly a lost treasure. New fans will stray from the album as more reviewers simply write the album off as being 'brutal' and 'sloppy' or 'solid death metal' as what I have read. The thing is that Orchid is just as diverse as Blackwater Park or their latest release, Ghost Reveries. Presented in Orchid is what will become of Opeth on a grand scale: brutal, melodic, acoustic, alternative, emotional and heartfelt by placing melodic death metal alongside acoustic and clean electric guitar rock.

An equal range of guttural and clean vocals is still in full form on Orchid. They are more raspy and poorly produced, many of the lyrics unlistenable at times. They come across as loud roars and screams. Many reviews I've read have said that there are only death metal vocals on the album; apparently, they didn't listen to the album at all or at least didn't listen the whole way through. However, guttural death metal vocals do show up more then the clean and there is an imbalance on Orchid; that would mean that sizing the vocal diversity on this album up with a later release would be unjust. Orchid oddly contains more acoustic guitar trinkets then some later albums, played by themselves with no instrumental accompaniment.

Although Orchid is nothing like the band's further evolution into stunning masterpieces like My Arms, Your Hearse, Blackwater Park or the brilliantly dark acoustic Damnation, Orchid still needs to be mentioned in any topic of Opeth because their musical diversity can be traced back to this album. If Opeth put out a debut album which was just death metal, then Orchid could be written off as an album where they didn't know what they were doing and hadn't stretched out their musical wings. The thing is that Mikael Åkerfeldt and his gang knew exactly what they were doing right from the beginning and it really shows on their debut album Orchid.

Rating breakdown
Performance: 7
Songwriting: 8
Originality: 10
Production: 7

Written by Kap'N Korrupt | 17.08.2006


Guest review disclaimer:
This is a guest review, which means it does not necessarily represent the point of view of the MS Staff.

Comments page 2 / 2

Comments: 32   [ 1 ignored ]   Visited by: 302 users
28.07.2012 - 02:27
Written by Guest on 27.07.2012 at 23:44

"Lost gem" is reserved for bands a lot smaller than Opeth.

Considering how underappreciated and "underknown" this album is, not just in relation to Opeth's rest (and especially their post-BwP albums) but even without comparing it to other Opeth releases, I think the term is rather fairly used here.

This album is not without flaws, it can drag on and at times is really disjointed, yet despite even those flaws, this is easily some of the best shit Opeth has ever written.
28.07.2012 - 19:14
Written by Guest on 28.07.2012 at 17:50

It's well-known and the appreciation level is what it is. Simply, it's not lost at all.


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