I considered writing about Opeth back during the Chameleons series of posts, but came to the conclusion that two posts, covering early and late periods of the band, just would not work in this case. Opeth’s evolution has been steadily taking place over thirty years.
Starting out as a more extreme band mixing death metal and growls with a more prog sound, Opeth were quite influential in that sphere. However, they have slowly shed more and more of the elements associated with metal, and more recent albums are heavily influenced by the prog rock sounds of the 70s.
Opeth’s earlier albums are hugely influential with their progressive take on death metal and some (‘Blackwater Park”, “Ghost Reveries”, and “Watershed” for example) are considered modern classics and absolute peak albums of their genre(s). Their recent albums may have lost some fans, gained some others, but they too have been overall very well received and adored by critics.
Because Opeth have always, unabashedly, been 100% Opeth, and never bowed to any external pressures. Very few bands in the modern era have have so boldly stayed true to themselves like Opeth have.
I actually struggled to settle on a song choice here, because nothing truly represents their entire career. It’s just far too varied. So instead I’ll go with an obvious choice, one of their most iconic hits, and one that plays to all their strengths, old and new (I think). But I also pair my choice with a request that you seek out more of Opeth’s work, from throughout their history. But this is one band that anything less will really not do them justice.