by Christian Decker
Almost every time it’s rainy or dreary outside, my first instinct is to put on Blackwater Park, by Opeth. It’s hard to overstate how much of an impact that Opeth’s music has had on me both as a musician and a lover of music. It’s hard to separate any particular song on the album in a single or a separate entity, partly because all the songs are incredibly long, and also because of how they seamlessly flow together while still remaining with their distinct identities.
It really is the perfect album for a rainy day, the minor key of the songs mixed with the soothing acoustic patterns that layer into the rest of the music just never get old. Not to mention this album proves that Mikael Åkerfeldt is one of, if not the best metal vocalist of all time. It really is a shame that he stopped doing pure death metal vocals on their most recent records. The satanic growling that compromises the majority of the songs, somehow perfectly mixes with his incredibly clean vocals that capture such a range of emotion that it always manages to uplift me. You’d have to listen to believe me it’s absolutely remarkable.
The album is dark, melancholic, a little creepy at some points and hauntingly beautiful. It’s one of my go-tos and an album that I almost always have to listen to in its entirety because of how amazing it is. The sheer power radiating from each song is just breathtaking, even on songs that have all clean vocals, like “Harvest,” my dad’s favorite. I highly encourage you to try it out, even if you don’t like metal. It’s transcendent, reaching levels that musicians could only hope to achieve.
Favorite Track: Bleak