Blackwater Park and Still Life


is behind you.
May 25, 2001
New Hampshire
Ho-lee shit.

I got Blackwater Park about 2 months ago, and I can already safely say it's one of my top 5 favorite albums. It doesn't need to stand the test of time, because I KNOW it will, it's just that good. And the majority of the people here seem to like Still Life way more, which is actually surprising to me. I can't imagine them putting out a better one than this.

I'm getting Still Life tomorrow, and if it's as good as BP, and all the other ones are too, Opeth will probably be my favorite band. I've really never been this blown away by a band before.
Heh, welcome, soon-to-be-Opethian. Would that make you like an Opeth cadet? An Opethian-in-training? heh... ANYWAYS!

I'm one of the guys who thinks Blackwater Park is Opeth's 5th best record, so I'd have to say you're in for many a pleasant surprise (get them ALL, dammit!).

Some of my now-standard messages to the new Opeth fan who just picked up BWP:

- Work your way backwards. Get Still Life next, then My Arms Your Hearse, then Morningrise, then Orchid.
- You'll find that Morningrise and Orchid are a bit different in style than the more recent 3 records - a different growl vocal sound, different guitar style, different production. A LOT of people on this forum like those 2 older ones best.
- Opeth can dominate your listening for a long time. It took me a year and a half to figure out MAYH is my favourite record and I STILL can't stop listening to it. (this is a really good thing, tho :))

A note for the forum regulars: Is it just me, or are Still Life and Morningrise no one's least favourite Opeth record? Just something I've noticed in the 3,098,328,365 different threads that have included the notion of "which Opeth record is your favourite" ...which I'm pseudo-hypocritically bringing up again.
Well, Morningrise and Still Life are in the top of the "best opeth album" poll I think, so it's not so strange :)
Originally posted by HoserHellspawn

A note for the forum regulars: Is it just me, or are Still Life and Morningrise no one's least favourite Opeth record? Just something I've noticed in the 3,098,328,365 different threads that have included the notion of "which Opeth record is your favourite" ...which I'm pseudo-hypocritically bringing up again.

I don't think I've ever posted on one of those threads before. Just because I can't really decide. But I do know that Still Life is in my lower half of albums. Which is just mind-blowing for me since I love this album to death, lol.
I think it's fantastic that in the best album poll, no album received zero votes. Also, in all of the best song off each album polls, no song received zero votes. That means that Opeth did something very right in every album and every song they have recorded.
Hmmm, doesn't "prologue" have zero votes?
Ah well, I admit we can exclude it :)

I'm still waiting for someone to pull together a poll for Orchid.
I put Still Life right smack in the middle..

2: Morningrise
3: Still Life
4: Blackwater Park
5: Orchid
I'll get the non-music stuff out of the way first.

Why do Martin Lopez and Martin Mendez look EXACTLY the same?

There wasn't much point in having this CD boxed. It's not like it comes with anything extra. You open the box, and why do you get...? The exact same art, except not on cardboard. Ooh. The box is just there to fuck with your mind. Every time I try to put the CD in there, I need to get in a damn fight with the thing, and it ends up all frayed and weird on the edges.

The CD scratched for some reason. Why? I don't know. All I've done is open it, set it down for no more than a minute, and put it in the CD player. Now I can't listen to the end of Serenity Painted Death.

Is there a concept to this album? It mentions Melinda 3 or 4 times throughout it...

Now the music stuff.

Yesterday I tried listening to it while on the computer, and that didn't work so well. My dad kept talking about it, and I couldn't conentrate anyways, so today I listened again.

I'm not going to do a song by song thing, because I still can't tell them apart from each other. For Blackwater Park, it took me about 5 listens. And I still get confused sometimes. The Moor started things off really good, and it got better as it went on. The only song I don't like very much is SPD, but maybe that's just because of the chorus (not good).

Overall, I'd say it might be a liiiittle bit better than Blackwater Park, but it still hasn't sunken in yet.
About the look-alikes: Personally, I was more surprised by the fact that they're both named Martin...

The Scratch: Is the end of "Serenity-Painted Death" the ONLY problem with your CD? If so, it most likely isn't a scratch; I can guarantee you that the song ends abruptly on all CDs...

The Concept: Yes, "Still Life" is one of Opeth's two concept albums (the other is "My Arms, Your Hearse") and, in my opinion, the best.

Serenity-Painted Death: What's wrong with the chorus?
Soul Forlorn: I've only been listening to Opeth since October 2000, but "Morningrise" has always been my favorite Opeth album. Still, I think you're right. It's not surprising, though, since, for example, "The Funeral Portrait" and "Serenity-Painted Death" are easy-listening compared to "Forest of October" and "Black Rose Immortal"....
I only have Blackwater Park and Morningrise. I don't want to rush out and buy all the others yet (though I know they will be good) because it would be too much music to digest. I want to enjoy Blackwater Park and Morningrise in their entirety before moving on to the other albums.
I think Still Life is my favorite because it's a concept album, and uses more syncopated rhythms. It also has two really mellow ballads, as opposed to 1, providing a somewhat better balance. I also think Blackwater Park is really great, so it's a very close call, but perhaps the general sense of flow in Still Life is what makes me prefer it at the end.

Blackwater Park is also not as different from the previous album as Still Life was from My Arms, Your Hearse, and as a result it didn't have as much of an effect of newness or surprise. In fact, all seven songs on both albums roughly follow the same scheme and correspond to each other:

1. Long complex heavy progressive track with a short very mellow part near the middle (The Moor, The Leper Affinity)
2. Highly structured song with clean long middle part with clean vocals (Godhead's Lament, Bleak (also ironically my favorite tracks on boths albums))
3. Ballad with three verses and a long instrumental bridge between second and third (Benighted, Harvest)
4. Heavy innovative track, somewhat different from all the the three previous ones (Moonlapse Vertigo, The Drapery Falls)
5. Slow, melancholic song (The Face of Melinda, Dirge for November (these aren't really one-to-one, but still))
6. Assaultive, fast, very heavy track (Serenity Painted Death, The Funeral Portrait)
7. Long song with lots of different parts and interludes (White Cluster, Blackwater Park)

Actually, Morningrise might be the album that I listen to the least frequently right now. (Of course, I have yet to hear Orchid.)
The Martins do look a little similar, but you can easily see the difference in person. Lopez is a bit of a slighter build and his face isn't as full (I can't think of the right term right now). Mendez also has either really light brown or hazel eyes. They're both about the same hight, though, and they are the two that didn't make me feel short. :D
Originally posted by Soul Forlorn
I've also noticed that for a lot of people their first cd by a particular band remains their favorite. For example, Orchid for me. When you first discover a new band that really moves you like Opeth does, that first experience remains very special and emotional.

I'm trying to decide whether or not I fit this stereotype. My first Opeth "experience" was Morningrise but I didn't listen to it in full, and when I went to buy it, they didn't have it, and I got MAYH instead, (technically my first Opeth record) and was a little bit disappointed (I think few people really really love MAYH right away if they've heard other Opeth stuff). Then, I went out and got Orchid and Morningrise, shelved Orchid and MAYH, and listened to Morningrise for about half of a year until Still Life came out. Listened to Still Life for about a half of a year, then kinda shelved Morningrise (as I had listened to it disproportionately more than any of the others) and recently came to realize MAYH is my favourite. Hmmm...