OPETH – Deliverance

Deliverance, OPETH‘s sixth album, sees the band incorporate more death metal influences than their previous work, Blackwater Park, resulting in their heaviest album yet. “Wreath” opens it up immediately with flurries of double-bass drumming and the hard-hitting fills of Martin Lopez, who hasn’t given his drums a beating this hard since his work on Once Sent From The Golden Hall. But Lopez also mixes it up during the Middle Eastern percussion jam half-way through the song. In addition to giving his best performance yet throughout the album’s entirety. The performance is also helped along by Andy Sneap‘s in your face drum mix. Meanwhile, Mikael Akerfeldt has chosen to use more death metal vocals this time around, perhaps inspired by his work on the most recent BLOODBATH album. The overall guitar sound is also much thicker and fuller sounding than usual, giving the songs a lot of extra beef to them. But while the majority of the album has a darker more aggressive feel than the band’s previous work, they still deliver a fine melodic epic in “A Fair Judgment.” With “Master’s Apprentices,” the band pays to tribute to one of their long-time favorites, MORBID ANGEL, by including more than a fair share of familiar riffs, drum, and vocal patterns. So for those of you who felt Blackwater Park was too soft or if you prefer the band’s older stuff, especially My Arms, Your Hearse, then Deliverance is for you. The rest can look forward to the band’s next album, Damnation, which promises to showcase the band’s softer side. Regardless, with Deliverance the band has once again succeeded in creating another ambitious addition to the OPETH catalog. (Koch Records)

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