on 30 August 2005
This is my favourite Opeth album. The music sounds like it's always been around but yet somehow Opeth make it sound ethereal. Lovely lyrics and a variety of sounds blended together to make molten musical heaven. An album to get lost in. If I had more than two thumbs I'd hold them all up. But I don't. So two for Opeth.
on 8 October 2009
As a fan of Opeths heavier side, (and brutal death metal in general) I approached this album with much caution as acoustics and clean vocals have never been my kind of thing. However, after a couple of listens I was shocked to hear just how eerie and twisted this band this can be, in fact the songs that compile "Damnation" have a much darker quality than that of say, "Orchid". This album is (in my opinion) a real masterpiece in the fact that appeals to so many listeners whether you are into Prog, Rock, Jazz or metal such as myself. Dont get me wrong it's not the ideal place to start if you are thinking of giving Opeth a try, (for that you will need "still life" or "Morningrise") however after discovering the basics of this band you will find "Damnation" to become a real gem in your Opeth collection.
Standouts: "Closure", "Windowpane".
I was never a massive fan of Opeth's material, having listened to the "Arms" album, but I bought this and I was blown away.
Ok so first off it's a massive departure from the usual Opeth offerings but a welcome break and I congraulate the record company for having faith in their artist to release it.
The album basically consists of 8 semi-acoustic tracks, the clarity of which really allows the musicians to show their talent. If you think Alice in Chains unplugged but without the live pressure and audiance. This album is absolutly perfect for that wind-down on a Sunday morning drive the morning-after-the-night-before after a major hardcore gig. The slow pace and beautifully crafted songs really make you feel good, that's not to say Opeth have lost that dark edge, the lyrics themselves are as dark as any Goth's dream, wonderfully depressing!
So highlights for me have to be the wonderfully melodic first track "Windowpane" and the very ominous "To Rid the Disease" with it's hideously "Tell-Tale Heart" bass-line that drills into your brain.
If your a hardcore metal fan and you appreciate that musicians sometimes need to slow down and get that garbage out of their heads, get this album. Get it for those moments when the amps need to be unplugged and lights put down, but you still need a dark driving heart in your music.
At the moment, I can't get through my day without a quick blast of this album!
on 19 February 2006
I'd listened to Opeth before, mostly on video media, and this was the first album I got hold of of theirs. It's a lot mellower than I expected it to be. There's no death, it's all prog, but so well-crafted there aren't really any moments where it lags. This is already one of my favourite rock albums - I've regained my faith that good, original rock music can still be written. I honestly can't think of any better rock album from the last decade, one of those which you listen to and think, every single one of those songs was genius. It's probably the subtlest album I own too, though at the same time there are some complex structures and new sounds here which make it psychadelic and almost hypnotic. A truly great and unique band are Opeth. I defy anyone who's into contemporary music, no matter how hardcore, to dislike this album.
on 8 February 2009
If you like some jazz, blues, unplugged sesions, and good spaced-out santana vibes THIS album is for you.
Put the CD on, light the candles and incense, switch off the lights get yourself a glass of wine and enjoy the music.
on 23 April 2003
Firstly, the amazon review is right- Opeth have said that Damnation is 'softer' but still has elements of the light/heavy trademark Opeth style, but it must be said that compared to Deliverence, the two are chalk and cheese- albeit chalk and cheese that go well together- if you know Blackwater Park (and you should!)- you will know what i am talking about.
The songs are beautifully crafted, full of atmosphere, have a distinct haunting quality, and are just so adept at hitting you right where they intend to. The highlight to me is the second track 'In my time of need'- the chorus is pure genius.
To be honest there is little more to say, to all music lovers, metal or not, who like dark, honest, atmospheric music i can't recommend this album enough.
on 2 May 2003
First off, for those of you who are new to Opeth, you need to know that this is the second half of their Deliverance/Damnation "experiment"; the former being the "heavy" album and more like their previous works, and the latter being the "mellow" album, a rather daring experiment, but one that I feel has paid off. I hadn't heard a single song off this album until I actually bought the album (other than a little sample they played at the end of the gig I went to), so I wasn't exactly sure what to expect. After having listened to this album over and over since the day I bought it, I can say they pulled it off perfectly. At the moment, I feel "Damnation" may actually be the better half of the experiment (although "Deliverance" is a great album, too).
The standout song from this album has to be "In My Time Of Need". The best way I can describe this song is as one filled with haunting emotion (and a fantastic chorus) that immediately strikes to the core of your soul, and will keep you reaching for the repeat button over and over again. Another top song from this album is "Hope Leaves" - with its lonely, deserted feel - it is soothing, yet sad. The instrumental track on this album, "Ending Credits", is a nice interlude - and quite possibly the most uplifting song on the album (that I can't help but feel Carlos Santana would be proud of if he himself had written it) - leading to the final haunting song on the album.
While this album may be mellow, it is quite heavy and dark in emotion. This is a great album that any fan of good music will truly enjoy, even if the heavier aspects of Opeth's past works may be a little too heavy for them. And for the long-time fans of Opeth, this is just another great work from this multi-dimensional band to add to their collection, and quite possibly one of the best.
on 15 April 2003
I know there's been a lot of mixed feelings about this album, and a lot of differing expectations. Some people have gone a bit overboard in saying Opeth are no longer the same band, or that Steven Wilson of Porcupine Tree has taken them over, but really I think that's a bit extreme. Damnation was always planned as a companion disc to Deliverance; they were recorded at the same time and were originally supposed to be released together. Mikael Akerfeldt (vocalist) had always said that this was a bit of experimentation that he really wanted to do, and that he knew some people would hate it.
So anyway, the music then. You probably already know this, but there are no metal songs on this album, it's purely mellow tracks. Although mellow isn't really right, because the whole album still has that dark Opeth feel, especially tracks like Closure, which actually becomes pretty foreboding. Yes, it does sound a fair bit like Porcupine Tree, but Opeth's mellow parts have done for a while, and it still also sounds like Opeth. There is still plenty of experimentation, nothing else around sounds like this.
It's quite intruiging to spot some of the connections between Deliverance and Damnation. It's also just good to see Opeth applying their brilliant musical talent to a slightly different style of music and seeing how it turns out. I think this album is great, although I can't see Opeth releasing another one like this. Instead perhaps they will release more metal albums that include songs of a similar style, which I think would work brilliantly, but it's clear from this that they just wanted to experiment more freely with these types of songs, and it should be celebrated that they were allowed to do this, and that they had the conviction to carry it through without caring about what people think.
on 14 April 2003
Must admit i bought this album on a chance really, and i definitely wasn't let down in any way. This album is truly amazing.
For anyone who loves those parts on an album when a particularly heavy band seem to have a chill out and just play some quality music from the heart, then this is the album for you. i'm thinking song along the lines of outside by staind, bother by stone sour, amongst others, songs which just sit outside of anythings else and forge there own experience as a result. this album takes that and extends it to one whole album, and looses none of the impact as a result.
truly different from most albums i've heard before it. it is definitely a 'metal' album you can buy and relax to. the singer sings throughout this album which is a refreshing change. often time with bands of this genre i listen and think the music is fantastic but i wish they'd stop screeching/shouting for a change and let the music do the talking.
Not what you'd expect at all from a detah metal band. indeed not really death metal as such but a truly amazing sound none-the-less.
I cannot recommend this album enough. i wish there was more out there like this.
on 30 April 2005
People think that to listen to slow quiet music sissy, but Damnation is one in a million. The music and vocals are beautiful. Mikael Akerfeldt is a true genious. Damnation is one of those albums where it`s hard to pick a favourite song, because each song has a unique feature example: to rid the diease has the brilliant keyboard solo and windowpane has the legendary guitar solo. My personal favourite is windowpane. Damnation is easily one of the best albums ever written. The only thing that could make it better is if `Harvest` was on it too.