Opeth - Heritage review



Reviewer:
7.8

1131 users:
7.29
Band: Opeth
Album: Heritage
Release date: September 2011


01. Heritage
02. The Devil's Orchard
03. I Feel The Dark
04. Slither
05. Nepenthe
06. Häxprocess
07. Famine
08. The Lines In My Hand
09. Folklore
10. Marrow Of The Earth
11. Pyre [DVD bonus]
12. Face In The Snow [DVD bonus]


The general consensus when a great band dares to move away from their original Death Metal sound is usually not positive. However Opeth have done it before masterfully with Damnation in 2003. They are back at it with one of the year's most anticipated albums, Heritage.

Cutting to the chase: Compared to their previous releases, Heritage lacks character. Despite the song structures being very progressive rock and the vocals being crazy good, the absence of catchy guitar riffs or memorable growls is a downer. One can positively recognize Opeth as the artist, especially since a lot of the songs borrow tidbits straight from the Ghost Reveries period. Certainly they manage to perpetuate a dark atmosphere throughout the album, but the mellowness of the whole thing is borderline irritating to someone expecting their trademark sound. I know we have been forewarned by Mikael Åkerfeldt himself about this being a throwback kind of release. Still, I believe this would be either catchier or more aggressive. Nevertheless the album does feature good moments, mostly from the jazz-infused portions of the songs.

Most of the vocal work by Mikael is spot on and even more breathtaking than ever before. And yes, we are talking about clean vocals only, which is unfortunate. Technically there is nothing to complain about, musicianship is at an all-time high. But when your band has members or former members of Bloodbath and Arch Enemy, listeners are bound to expect a little ferociousness whether in the form of harsh vocals or hell-spawn guitar riffs.

This is undeniably the one album that will have fans divided. On its own it is a great 70s-inspired throwback progressive rock album. Assessed as part of Opeth discography it fails to win me over completely. It is grand if you are into progressive rock and the band need to be applauded for the effort and guts to do something like this at this stage of their career. But ultimately the dearth of grabbing melodies endures as the downfall of Heritage.


Rating breakdown
Performance: 9
Songwriting: 7
Originality: 9
Production: 9


 



Written on 20.09.2011 by Bringing you reviews of quality music and interesting questions such as:

"A picture is worth a thousand words. How many words is a song worth?"

I have only got so much patience and skills, you do the math.

Guest review by
SauradipGhosh
Rating:
8.6
Heritage poses more questions than answers. Have Opeth reached a creative cul-de-sac? Have they chucked their "Extreme Progressive Death Metal" for good? Have they finally shed their "Underground Garage Band" (I am quoting Akerfeldt from an earlier interview) and have ventured out into the Pantheon of the "mainstream" Gods from their hallowed underground temple so frequented by hordes of reverent worshipers?

Read more ››
published 29.05.2012 | Comments (32)


Comments page 5 / 5

Comments: 134   Visited by: 1153 users
07.10.2011 - 23:20
Adalmetal
I've been quite an opeth's fan for some years now... and, I think they're one of the greatest band out there. Now, I'm not a musician to critize someone's material and to qualify it as crap. I don't think this is the case. But, this new Opeth release, really somehow have let me down. I don't know what is it about it, but the album doesn't grab my attention as much as the old releases. When I listened about this album being without growls, I didn't feel bad about it, since Damnation is one of my favorite albums from Opeth, and I believe that we all have to agree that is unique. Maybe this album hasn't grown on me, maybe in the future it may be one of my favorites... but, what I know for sure, is that this album just didn't make me feel the same way I feel to other Opeth's albums. I hope one day I get this one...
----
Fulfilment lost in a lifetime of regret
Ornate peace would cover me
As I would die now...
For one last wish
Loading...
09.10.2011 - 11:31
dr.death
ponderer again
Written by Adalmetal on 07.10.2011 at 23:20

I've been quite an opeth's fan for some years now... and, I think they're one of the greatest band out there. Now, I'm not a musician to critize someone's material and to qualify it as crap. I don't think this is the case. But, this new Opeth release, really somehow have let me down. I don't know what is it about it, but the album doesn't grab my attention as much as the old releases. When I listened about this album being without growls, I didn't feel bad about it, since Damnation is one of my favorite albums from Opeth, and I believe that we all have to agree that is unique. Maybe this album hasn't grown on me, maybe in the future it may be one of my favorites... but, what I know for sure, is that this album just didn't make me feel the same way I feel to other Opeth's albums. I hope one day I get this one...


You couldn't have summed up your discontent any better. It's a shame the rest of the tools who took a shit on this cd couldn't have articulated themselves like you did. Nice job of expressing your opinion and nailing your feelings. My only advice is to give it time. As a retired musician it's such a refreshing change to hear Opeth exploring the music instead of giving in to the monetary side of things and producing the same stuff over and over. They just ooze talent from every pore and proved it with this release, and they literally do not care who likes it and who doesn't. At this point they know who their real fans are.

Again, nice job of expressing how you really feel instead of taking the typical approach and saying "IT SUCKS N STUFF" just because there isn't any growling.
----
hai guys. i'm ponderer. back again. i just cannot quit this site. how pathetic am i?
Loading...
10.10.2011 - 20:27
T_s_T
I personally can't put my head around it...maybe after a spliff...but not now, not sober...
Loading...
11.10.2011 - 02:44
4look4rd
The Sasquatch
This is probably one of my favorite albums of the year along with Grace of Drowning and Road Salt Two. I am really enjoying this 70's nostalgia-trip that a lot of the main Prog Metal bands are taking.
----
Loading...
11.10.2011 - 06:33
Adalmetal
Written by dr.death on 09.10.2011 at 11:31

Written by Adalmetal on 07.10.2011 at 23:20

I've been quite an opeth's fan for some years now... and, I think they're one of the greatest band out there. Now, I'm not a musician to critize someone's material and to qualify it as crap. I don't think this is the case. But, this new Opeth release, really somehow have let me down. I don't know what is it about it, but the album doesn't grab my attention as much as the old releases. When I listened about this album being without growls, I didn't feel bad about it, since Damnation is one of my favorite albums from Opeth, and I believe that we all have to agree that is unique. Maybe this album hasn't grown on me, maybe in the future it may be one of my favorites... but, what I know for sure, is that this album just didn't make me feel the same way I feel to other Opeth's albums. I hope one day I get this one...


You couldn't have summed up your discontent any better. It's a shame the rest of the tools who took a shit on this cd couldn't have articulated themselves like you did. Nice job of expressing your opinion and nailing your feelings. My only advice is to give it time. As a retired musician it's such a refreshing change to hear Opeth exploring the music instead of giving in to the monetary side of things and producing the same stuff over and over. They just ooze talent from every pore and proved it with this release, and they literally do not care who likes it and who doesn't. At this point they know who their real fans are.

Again, nice job of expressing how you really feel instead of taking the typical approach and saying "IT SUCKS N STUFF" just because there isn't any growling.


Thanks!
I don't feel the same way as some people, because they don't listen some growls vocals they clasified it as S**T. It's good that musician take a variation in their career. It would certainly get repetitive. I, myself, listen to lots of stuff, from all the genres, and i've enjoyed Mikael's voice in other interesting projects outside of Opeth (e.g. Ayreon, Katatonia, Bloodbath..) And from these, i have to say that i really enjoyed what Mikael did on Ayreon (it's one of my fav's albums). Back to heritage, I wouldn't say bad things about it, cos it's a new approach. Same happen to me with Anathema, I started listening to the old school records, then i listened to the works after Eternity, and I have to admit I couldn't stand it. I just couldn't get this new stuff, I kinda hated it... but, overtime I kept on trying, and they just grew on me, to the point (eventhough i REALLY love the OLD) I feel the new anathema express themselves somehow better than before, musically speaking, and now I love their last record (we're here coz we're here)... so, definitely grows are not what matters, but i really miss that awesome chemistry of the old Opeth.

Now, talking about new changes in music, is it only me that find this interesting, I mean Opeth is taking a new more progressive rock kinda approach, while Porcupine Tree is getting a lil more heavy with the time...? is it like Mikael is trying to accomplish few dreams?, we all know he's a fan of old prog rock and stuff like that...

Bottom line: I hope I get this cd, some songs sound nice to me... but, I don't know yet, overall hasn't had the impression I usually get from Opeth's albums...
----
Fulfilment lost in a lifetime of regret
Ornate peace would cover me
As I would die now...
For one last wish
Loading...
01.11.2011 - 02:12
levarca56
I guess Heritage should be a Mikael's side-project. This album, though is very original, definitely does not sound like Opeth.
Loading...
12.11.2011 - 22:53
Coconut Racecar
I am an extremely open minded person, and i love all different sorts of sounds and styles of music.. but this album really does fail to keep me entertained. i love all of Opeth's albums equally, and ironically the only one i like particularly more than the rest is Damnation. this album however is just too..... blah ? but hey, one throwback amongst the many other masterpieces they have shouldn't make too much of a disturbance within their fanbase.
Loading...
06.02.2012 - 22:25
INÆRIS
Written by levarca56 on 01.11.2011 at 02:12

I guess Heritage should be a Mikael's side-project. This album, though is very original, definitely does not sound like Opeth.


It does sound like Opeth. I just doesn't sound like what you want Opeth to sound like.
----
Still Life, Still Death
Loading...
29.02.2012 - 17:26
\m/opeth2833
Account deleted
Heritage is an average album by the band's standards. But a few tracks are worth listening \m/
Loading...
06.06.2012 - 08:59
Soulhole
This album is a letdown for many opeth fans. i liked opeth for what they were and thought they were at the top of their game, now i dont even know what their game is... the 7.5 rating speaks for itself.
Loading...
15.09.2012 - 01:25
levarca56
Written by INÆRIS on 06.02.2012 at 22:25

Written by levarca56 on 01.11.2011 at 02:12

I guess Heritage should be a Mikael's side-project. This album, though is very original, definitely does not sound like Opeth.


It does sound like Opeth. I just doesn't sound like what you want Opeth to sound like.
Loading...
15.01.2013 - 06:13
Urizen367
Not an album for fans of traditional opeth (blackwater park, deliverence, my arms your hearse), but for you guys who listen to all that goofy shit, this is pretty decent.
----
I will not reason and compare, my business is to create.
Loading...
18.01.2013 - 08:03
Misfit74
Written by INÆRIS on 06.02.2012 at 22:25

Written by levarca56 on 01.11.2011 at 02:12

I guess Heritage should be a Mikael's side-project. This album, though is very original, definitely does not sound like Opeth.


It does sound like Opeth. I just doesn't sound like what you want Opeth to sound like.


Ding ding ding. We have a winner.
Loading...
17.12.2013 - 00:20
CaptainRhodes
As soon as I heard this album my faith in Opeth dropped to zero. It's such a waste of time. There are TONS of 70's prog acts that far outshine this boring imitation. It's further disappointing because I know Opeth are capable of doing this sort of album spectacularly.

It's a 1 for disappointment, but it's actually just an average album, so a 5 from me.
Loading...

Hits total: 21884 | This month: 56