1999, Music

Still Life (1999) by Opeth

Guys, I think I don’t like Opeth.

I was rereading my review of My Arms, Your Hearse and, if I read between the lines, I think I didn’t like it as much as I said I did, because Opeth are a big deal I was trying to give them the benefit of the doubt. One thing I noted was that the album didn’t really sound that “progressive” to me. Well, same with this one.

Opeth write long songs, that often combine different sections together. So I guess that’s “progressive” in some sense, though it’s really not that far off what metal bands have been doing since metal existed. (Zeppelin, Purple and Sabbath all did this, to an extent.) And they combine pretty loud and aggressive riffing with more melodic sections. It’s in the more melodic sections where they lose me. The melodic sections are rarely musically interesting to me and rarely as compelling as the loud parts. When they’re a death metal band, I like them. When they’re a melodic death metal band, I guess I don’t mind them – though I prefer other melodic death metal bands. But this music isn’t particularly adventurous, at least it doesn’t strike me as so. I get that the music is pretty far off what people think of (thought of) as death metal at the time. But how “progressive” is it, really?

Let’s try this again.

I am trying to figure out why I don’t like it. I like aspects of it. I’m listening to it thinking “This is pretty heavy” and “That’s quite a juxtaposition of heavy and soft together, especially for 1999”. And I’m just not moved by it in anyway. And I seemingly cannot articulate at the moment.

One thing I can articulate: though it is impressive that Akerfeldt can sing both ways, I don’t particularly love his voice when he sings melodically. It doesn’t really do anything for me. (Though it is admittedly way better than the voices of most screamers/growlers.)

Maybe I just need more time with it.


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