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Blackwater Park
Format: Audio CD|Change
Price:£5.99+ Free shipping with Amazon Prime

on 2 April 2010
As the amazon description shows this new CD+DVD edition of the modern dark progressive classic "Blackwater park" has just had a fresh outing less than seven years after it's release, it's about time mind you, "Still life" arguably their best album to date has been out in a luxurious Digibook for some time now if i recall, so this release is rather a good point of call. Fans are going to love this as far as i can tell (probably for the additional DVD with this set.) The bulk of the DVD features the Making of the album, albeit a short sessional piece which just about surpasses the 35 minute mark. Additionally, there is a 5.0 audio mix of the album, but anyone who doesn't have the required gear to make the most of this extra are undoubtably going to feel short changed. The Live rendition of the classic dark opus "The leper infinity" was definitely a good decision to include on the audio disc, not only is it one of their best songs but it is performed and executed extremely well.

Keeping things short and sweet I expect the majority of you that have come here will already own the album or at the very least, heard of the album and the band, I also expect many of you are pondering over the idea of whether to sell your standard 1 disc jewel version and upgrade to this lavish set? It was indeed something that made me think. And having already acquired this set as a dedicated fan since the "Damnation" album i must say I'm certainly not disappointed with this acquisition, I'm actually quite pleased with the product, in particular the documentary "making of" which i found very interesting, it's lacking material though, and that's it's only downfall! A 5.0 audio and 35 minute documentary in my opinion simply isn't enough material to include on a re-release, especially in comparison to the recent Fates warning deluxe editions of "Awaken the guardian, Perfect symmetry and Parallels" The decision to buy this ultimately lies on the buyer, but i would like to share a few important aspects and thoughts which I have had and ones which I hope will help you in the right direction.

Summary: This is a good re-release of the modern classic but it is more likely going to appeal to any of you who do not own the album, I would recommend it's purchase but just don't expect much more than a hours worth of extras, because what's here is the lot I'm afraid.....
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on 18 May 2008
This for me is a hugely rewarding and enjoyable album.

As I'm learning the guitar this is an absolute treasure trove of guitar styles. Everything from thrash metal, spanish guitar to gilmour-ish floydian lyricism. Usually all in one song too !

So full of ideas and somehow quite nostalgic in sound.

Oh wow, Drapery Falls just came on as I write this. Stunning. Sounds like a film score.

If dream theater are "the light side", these guys are definitely the dark.

As mentioned by others there is growling. But it works in the context.

Dream Theater meets Hammer House of Horror...
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on 30 September 2013
Blackwater Park is the fifth studio album by Swedish progressive death metal band Opeth. It was released on 27th February 2001 through Music for Nations and Koch Records. This was the first Opeth album to be released in North America at the same time as it was in the rest of the world. It has been released on compact disc and vinyl record formats. A special edition of Blackwater Park was issued in 2001 with a bonus second disc that included "Still Day Beneath the Sun" and "Patterns in the Ivy II". Those two bonus tracks were released together as a vinyl-only 7" EP by Robotic Empire Records in February 2003. The limited edition EP sold out in less than 24 hours and continues to be one of Opeth's most sought-after releases to date. Two singles were also released to promote Blackwater Park. A shortened radio edit version of "The Drapery Falls" was released as a promo single (the full-length album version is nearly 11 minutes long). The bonus track "Still Day Beneath the Sun" was later released as a vinyl only single. The album marks the first collaboration between Porcupine Tree frontman Steven Wilson and the band, as Wilson had been brought in to produce the album, which led to a considerable shift in Opeth's musical style. Blackwater Park did not chart in North America or the United Kingdom. The album had two singles released from it: "The Drapery Falls" and "Still Day Beneath the Sun". Blackwater Park was highly acclaimed on its initial release and has been praised by critics, with Eduardo Rivadavia of Allmusic stating that the album is "surely the band's coming-of-age album, and therefore, an ideal introduction to its remarkable body of work".

Opeth entered to Studio Fredman to begin work on Blackwater Park on 10th August 2000. The band had no previous lyrics written and had only rehearsed three times before entering the studio. The band's engineer Fredrik Nordström had arranged for the group to stay in a small room in the studio that had four beds. Opeth stayed there for around two weeks and then later rented out Dark Tranquillity member Mikael Stanne's flat. After recording the basic drums, rhythms, bass and acoustic guitars, Wilson arrived to produce the clean vocals and add some guitar leads. Åkerfeldt wrote that Wilson had an "immense impact on the recording" and after working with him the group entered "a new phase".

Blackwater Park is yet another excellent album by Opeth - did you know that they named this album and a couple of their other albums (My Arms, Your Hearse and Still Life) after progressive rock bands from the 1970s? Anyway, this album is another masterpiece and is very highly recommended, particularly because of its 12-minute title track "Blackwater Park" and the acoustic piece "Harvest" (to be fair, all of the tracks on this album are great so it's difficult to choose a favourite).
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on 18 April 2010
Blackwater Park - a classic album getting the best type of remix. I would love this and on the whole, I do, however, the problem is the best song on the album - The Drapery Falls - is monumentally destroyed.

For whatever reason, the song "Harvest" is repeated on loop all the way through, at 50% of the volume, meaning you can barely hear anything but Mikael's vocals for The Drapery Falls.

I have no idea how this passed any quality control checks or how no one else seems to have complained about it (did a Google search) - it's just awful and sub-standard.

The rest of the set is good but the best song is ruined and it really is unacceptable.
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on 9 December 2012
I've been an Opeth fan for years now, but due to laziness on my part I'm only just getting around to reviewing the albums I've owned for ages.

So Blackwater Park. Considered by many to be the finest thing Opeth have ever committed to disc. My favourite album will always be Morningrise, but this is definately one of Opeth's best albums. And considering the calibre of their back catalogue thats high praise indeed.

I normally don't do track by tracks but I think this album deserves it so:

The Leper Affinity: Starts quietly before launching into mighty riffting. A surprisingly aggressive song to start the album with. Nice little piano outro is a well added touch. As ever Opeth's attention to detail shine through here.

Bleak: A Slow starting track due to a repeating harmony for about the first 3-4 mins but its a track that slowly build up to a crashing crescendo.

Harvest: An acoustic track. Beautifully haunting and very dark. Steve Wilson also adds some leads to this one.

The Drapery Falls: For me the best song on the album. Slow starting, and clean sung for the most part, until about the last 3rd of the song when Mikael unleashes some of his finest growls ever recorded. Haunting, Dark but Brutal. This song alone shows exactly why Opeth are held in such high regard in terms of musicianship and pushing the envelope.

Dirge For November: Again an acoustic passage starts this song, before building into some haunting, almost evil melodies. Chorus on this one is excellent, you find yourself singing along after the first few listens.

The Funeral Portrait: The heaviest song on the album. Starts acousticly before unleashing some headbanging riffs. Proof that Opeth can write some songs that will ensure moshing at any live showing.

Patterns In The Ivy: This "song" is an acoustic interval that is there to provide some breathing space, before leading up to the next song nicely...

Blackwater Park: Perfect end to this album. Again some great riffs start this off, before it desolves into an acoustic interlude that lulls you into a sense of peace before unleashing more heavy riffs at you. Mighty.

If you are new to Opeth, this is a good starting point. A nice midway between their earlier, more death-metal albums of Orchids and Still Life, and the more Prog albums such as Watershed. If you are a fan of prog rock, there's a lot to like about Opeth, although if you aren't used to growled vocals, it can take some getting used to. Opeth are a unique band that are able to combine two genres seemingly at odds with each other, and make something powerful, aggressive and brutal, but at the same time expansive, haunting and beautiful. Well worth a listen if you are a fan of music that aspires to be more than just a distraction, and instead be something designed to pull you in and immerse you.
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on 26 June 2017
As a long-time fan of progressive metal, Opeth was a band name that kept popping up. I knew the day would come that I'd have to give them a shot, so where better to start than what seems to be one of their more highly-praised albums; 'Blackwater Park'.

Now, the whole doom and gloom death metal shouting has never really been my cup of tea. I can tolerate it in small doses, and when used in certain contexts it can be very effective, but too much of it is, well, too much! And Opeth have a lot of it!

But if I need to, I can look past that. And in this case, I can (just about) tolerate it, because Opeth have some incredible guitar acrobatics going on! The guitar riffs are so complex and intricate, there's a lot of things going on but at no point does any of it become overbearing. It sounds dark and gritty, but there's some really intelligent riffs going on here.

There are times when vocalist Mikael Akerfeldt sings cleans, and these are some of the more stand-out moments for me. And with some pretty amazing musicianship displayed in pieces like 'Bleak', 'The Funeral Portrait' and 'Harvest', there are some songs worth coming back to. Even if the singing is nothing more than unintelligible gibberish.

Opeth will never be my favourite band, and 'Blackwater Park' won't be an album I intend to go back to very often. But for what it is, it hasn't deterred me from sticking with the Swedish band for a while longer.
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on 6 August 2010
Back in 2010 I remember picking up this album from my local HMV store, when Opeth released the `legacy' edition of this album - remastered, bonus track and a `making of' documentary all included. It was my third album that I owned overall, after Ghost Reveries and Watershed. I vaguely remember being excited to listen to a new Opeth album as they were a new band to me back then; I don't even remember how I bought Watershed, it just suddenly appeared. Ghost Reveries was lent to me by one of my Dad's friends, way back when I was in college, listening to "The Grand Conjuration" on the walk to and from.

As I listened to this album I grew to fall in love with it. After years of struggling to find their feet, but still managing to release masterpieces - Orchid, Morningrise, My Arms Your Hearse and their best release pre-millennium Still Life - then Blackwater Park would be Opeth's firmest foot forward into the millennium. With Steven Wilson onboard to produce this album, many should have seen that himself and Mikael would strike up a strong friendship which would, no doubt, lead them to collaborating together at some point in the future (hint: 2012′s Storm Corrosion). Mikael has spoken many times about his fondness for Porcupine Tree's music (brilliantly displayed in his witty and dry humour on Live At the Royal Albert Hall, released in 2010).

And whilst this album was Opeth's brilliant display of musicianship demonstrated by sharp switches from heavy progressive death metal to soft folk metal in an instant, then Blackwater Park was their finest moment. This album is now regarded as Opeth's `breakthrough album' seeing that it thrust them into the worldwide metal scene. However, everything that has been said about this album - worldwide acclaim, and all that - is very true. Blackwater Park is a hallmark album, full of top-tier songwriting and musicianship. Whilst in later years Mikael's writing would reflect his influences and go away from the metal, this album would brilliantly display Opeth's more progressive side.

People often throw around that word too much - just like the word `masterpiece' - but here this album is littered with tracks that span ten minutes in length. However, there is a definite contrast when they throw a song like "Harvest" which is, strangely, the softest song on this album. This album is so amazingly textured considering it was released back in 2001 and, for a band who were releasing their fifth album, then it was a telling factor when their next albums (Damnation, Deliverance - their signing to Roadrunner Records - Ghost Reveries and Watershed) would scale up in the production and mixing.

There are so many great tracks on this album. The opening track "The Leper Affinity" strongly demonstrates the contrast of heaviness I was previously talking about. Whilst everyone else might focus heavily on the music here (which is by no means wrong) I have to remember that this was the first album where the `classic' Opeth line-up was debuted on a full-length. I say this because I still feel like on Still Life they were trying to find that right balance of heavy, and although the album's lyrics were focused on the love story that Mikael had written, I feel that with this album is where the musicians and their expertise finally clicked.

Even though this is a highly regarded and respected album, I'm going to say that it wasn't their best. Some might argue with me this, but I still highly regard "Ghost Reveries" as their ultimate monument, their magnum opus. Furthermore, it was as far as they could take their heavier side before ultimately showcasing a diversified effort with 2008′s Watershed. And, truth be told, Blackwater Park is where I went back to Ghost Reveries and really listened to it, as back in college I never appreciated how huge it would become to me.

The closing self-titled track is another demonstration of Opeth's fantastic song-writing prowess as the album finished on an extremely high note - no pun intended, folks. But really it cannot be argued that after this time Opeth were at the height of their powers. Because of its revered status, Opeth played the entire album live at the Royal Albert Hall and then tunes from the albums in chronological order, finishing with Watershed. If someone had told me way back then how important this band would become to me, I wouldn't have understood what they were saying - now, as fate happens, I do.

Overall: Nothing more can be said about this album than what I've whittled on for the last few paragraphs, though I knew I was getting to a point somewhere. I wanted to go back and explore these albums properly and in depth, not just some throwaway review to fill the numbers - hell no! Eventually I will get around to reviewing all ten of their albums. Blackwater Park deserves all the attention it gets, for it is truly a hallmark album but still (to me) years before their best.
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on 11 November 2006
I finally took the plunge and bought this album after toying with the idea for a couple of years. Porcupine Tree are one of my favourite bands and Steve Wilson helped produce this album. The only thing that put me off was the idea of listening to all the Death Metal grunts that I knew would proliferate. I have written this review just to say that if there is anyone else out there with the same concern, just buy this amazing masterpiece now!! This delightful mix of heavy, acoustic and progressive riffing has everything from beauty to savagery in it and usually in the same song. What really impresses me about this album is although the music is progressive in every sense of the word, it's never rammed down your throat. It flows effortlessly. Blackwater Park Should have won them awards. Unfortunately amazing music like this will never be the critics choice. Well nevermind that, enhance your life and buy this album immediately!
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on 15 May 2001
If you're an open minded rock or metal fan you'd do well to obtain a copy of Blackwater Park. Many ppl will be put off by the growling death vocals (of which is present only about 40 or 50 percent of the time) at first, but like any good music, after a few listens you really enjoy it. There is a real light/shade capacity to the superbly textured and structured music, with singer Mikael Akerfeld's clean vocals in superb harmony with the numerous atmospheric acoustic parts of the songs. Epicness is Opeth's watchword; on average each song is about 8 or 9 minutes long. The best tracks on the album are Bleak, The Drapery Falls and Dirge For November, but I didn't like any of those songs at first. Do not expect instantly catchy tunes, give this a few lessons and you will absolutely love this album, I guarantee it. On its own it is worth five stars, but they have done better albums. This is most likely the best starting point, however, as I think this album is the most accessible and it is the most recent. You will most likely have to end up buying the whole Opeth back catalogue, they really are that good.
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on 28 August 2010
I recently bought this album out of curiosity not really knowing what Opeth were actually about or even what they sounded like. I'd heard a mellow song called 'Hope Leaves' before but that was it.

When I first started playing it I was initially disappointed as 'The Leper Affinity' opened with what I considered to be a gutteral form of technical death metal. It didn't really appeal and I thought that if the rest of the album was like this then it would get quietly racked away and ignored. It wasn't long before my newly formed preconceptions were pushed when about a quarter of the way through, a rather tuneful solo came into play forcing me to accept that maybe this lot were more musical than I had first thought. A minute or so later the song moved into another technical section which led into a more mellow passage with acoustic guitars and excellent clean singing by Mikael Akerfeldt. By this point I was pretty confused as the song continued to play with my expectations as it built back up it's technical death metal sound before concluding with a melancholic piano passage.

I won't bother detailing the other tracks too much as they pretty much do the same sort of thing. That is, they shift with ease between styles both musically and vocally. The musicianship and songwriting on display here really is spectacular as the band expertly flit from one style to another without the songs sounding like a messy mash up of ideas missing any sense of form or shape.

The 2nd track 'Bleak' is another stunning example that includes a really catchy clean vocal section that I have been humming to myself for some time now. Probably my fave track but the others on here are equally skillful at integrating heavy elements with beautiful more folky acoustic moments and quieter more contemplative melancholic passages. 'Harvest' is the only purely mellow sounding track here and is also wonderful showcase of Mikael's vocals which are frankly amazing. He has such a good clean singing voice I'm surprised he can do the heavy growling without doing any damage.

The album is quite a lot to take in during a first sitting but multiple playthroughs really do reward the listener. I don't really know how to decribe this album other than experimental progressive death rock metal and as you can see that is pretty useless and doesn't fairly do it justice. It's just a really good album that requires listeners to pay attention and then rewards them in spades.

It's something I now consider to be a great introduction to a band. I've recently gone on to buy 'Damnation', 'Still Life', 'Deliverance' and 'Ghost Reveries' all of which I'm appreciating, but this I think, remains my favourite so far, especially with it being my first Opeth discovery.
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