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BEST ALBUMS OF 2016

My album of the year was a fairly late contender coming out at the end of September, but it simply blew me away with its stunning composure and rich textured depths. It is of course the progressive metal masters, Opeth with their twelfth album, ‘Sorceress’. This new beast was their first release though Nuclear Blast and the bands own imprint Moderbolaget Records. From the opening song, ‘Persephone’ you are immersed and charmed through its serene and melodic, almost gleeful tones, but it wouldn’t be Opeth without a dark undertone running through it, an almost air of sorrow, which truly embraces the ethos of Greek tragedy. Opeth are gods in their own right for their unique craftsmanship, and demonstrate this throughout this musical journey. Title track, ‘Sorceress’ invokes a dark presence and Akerfeldt’s signature impressive vocals soar. The instruments and sound give it an old school metal vibe, which represents the album throughout. Opeth are highly revered for their signature layered sounds, and this album is no exception, and their latest release, ‘The Wilde Flowers’ again helps capture the album’s very essence and the core of Opeth, even down to the name, being both daring, strange and beautiful, like a deadly flower. This amongst others has the makings of a fan favourite and all time classic Opeth sound, highlighting the significance and achievement of this new album, managing to go back to their roots, whilst mixing in a strange concoction of experimentalism and surrealism.

They take you on many twists and turns, and the exotic wild, ‘The Seventh Sojourn’ and ‘Strange Brew’ are great examples of this also, with the latter being one of the heaviest manic songs and graces us with some of the best vocals so far. The whole experience is immersive and mesmerising. This is a gloriously rich textured album, which simply oozes boundless creativity and superior craftsmanship. It is instantly captivating and holds a classic Opeth sound that is steeped in their dark roots, with bleak and intelligible lyrics adding a familiarity to their successful fan favourite, ‘Blackwater Park’ album, as well as having a fresh, exciting and luscious sound. They certainly pay homage to their older sound, so ‘Sorceress’ acts as the perfect cacophony of sounds, creating the ultimate myriad and again adding yet another eye opening layer to their impressive repertoire. CL

Profile for Stencil Mag

Issue 40 of Stencil Mag!  

Features interviews from the following: Bring Me The Horizon, Jimmy Eat World, Silverstein, Memphis May Fire, Silversun Pickups, I Prevail,...

Issue 40 of Stencil Mag!  

Features interviews from the following: Bring Me The Horizon, Jimmy Eat World, Silverstein, Memphis May Fire, Silversun Pickups, I Prevail,...

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