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Opeth - Heritage CD (album) cover

HERITAGE

Opeth

 

Tech/Extreme Prog Metal

3.82 | 1164 ratings

From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

The Crow
Prog Reviewer
2 stars Good bye death metal, welcome boredome!

Heritage changed it all... One of the most well crafted and influential prog metal bands of the last decades suddenly left the style that made them big to derivate into an attempt to replicate the 70's prog rock sound that Akerfeldt loves so much. And they clearly succeeded in achieving this goal buty the forgot the good and catchy songwriting in the process. Where is the overall quality that this band always had? Gone!

Per Wiberg gained a lot of protagonism (and he left right after finishing the album) in the sound of the band and that also happened with the ambiental and jazzy parts too, decreasing the decibels and eliminating the growls. But the album sounds good... Well, that's not accurate. The music has a great production and mixing! Steven Wilson helped, of course. But what happened with the songs?

Heritage is a beautiful and melancholic intro wich introduces us in the album's mood effectively, leading to The Devil's Orchard, the best song of the entire record, very dynamic and with a superb guitar and keyboard work. The ending of the song is astonishing! And the vocals are also adequate here.

But the comes I Feel the Dark... Why are you shouting all the time, Mikael? Where are your mellow and soft vocals? Are you trying to be someone else or it's just my imagination? The song is to bad, but the singing is. It just doesn't fit with the mood of the song. And them comes Slither, a mediocre attempt to recreate the 80's NWOBHM style, with a Mikael trying to sound like Dio... What the hell were you thinking, guys?

Nevertheless, Nepenthe is even worse. A boring jazz oriented track with a lot of psychedelia on it but with an absolute lack of direction, apart from a great guitar solo. Häxprocess starts with almost three minutes of nothing, and at this point we are irreparably bored to death. And the slightly better final part of the song can't repair that.

And of course Famine and its eternal and boring percussion part is not better. The good instrumental work can't disguise the complete lack of inspiration this song has. Fortunitely, The Lines in my Hand and its pompous mellotron, good acoustic guitars and the typical Opeth's sound save us from cutting our wrists. One of the best tracks of the album!

Folklore is not so bad like Nepenthe or Famine, but it's also far from the band's best moments. Echoes of Damnation but again with unfitty and lame vocals. Marrow of the Earth comes as summary of this album: sad, unloved and unispired.

Conclusion: it's not the lack of death metal vocals, or the style change. The problem with Heriage ist he bad songwriting and the endless boring parts. And of course, the Mikael Akerfeldt's singing, wich is strange, loud and just lame in occassions. What happened to you? I think this man was trying to became a different musician, a different singer... And he failed miserably.

After all this years, I'm still amazed... How managed one of my favourite bands to release an album so unispired? This always be a mistery for me.

Best Tracks: Heritage, The Devil's Orchard, The lines in My Hand.

My rating: **

The Crow | 2/5 |

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