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Review of "Sorceress" by Swedish Progressive Rock Band Opeth

Ara is a journalism graduate from California State University, Northridge, who is always looking to explore his writing opportunities.


Sorceress May Be a Sort of Adjustment Album for Some Listeners

You would think that some people reading the title of this will wonder is this a different band? Sweden’s Opeth that got their start in the 1990s as a progressive death metal band have shifted their style to be more of a progressive rock kind of music. Their 2016 album Sorceress is the latest album in my listening list. Opeth are back with what is a very refreshing album especially after your ears have been bombarded with a bunch of really heavy thrash metal songs. It may sound cheesy to say this but sometimes when a famous band releases an album that is so different from what they used to release earlier in their career, it is a sort of refreshing break from that older material. Artists change and music fans can have a change of musical taste as well.

What to Expect When Listening to Sorceress

Sorceress is not as light as the album Heritage as it still has riffs which are kind of heavy but obviously not anything like their early days. The album still has soft parts just like albums in their early years would have had. So Opeth has not been 100% transformed to be something different nor have they just created an album to match what the popular trends are.


About the Songs In Sorceress

The album starts out with the beautiful acoustic piece “Persephone” which is similar to something that the band In Flames would have written back in 1993 and 1994. While Opeth may not have totally abandoned their Swedish influenced metal roots, they have almost done that in favor of a more progressive rock musical direction. You will be amazed at just how beautiful this song really is. There are vocals in this song but they are too quiet to really hear. That doesn’t really matter in this case because the song itself although less than two minutes in length is truly one of a kind in terms of acoustic songs. As usual though, Opeth songs and albums take tremendous patience to sit through. That is just the nature of this band and their work. Sorceress has that sort of quality that most other Opeth albums do not. It is that softness combined with the jazz like guitar solos and sound as in the song “Chrysalis” However, even in that song, Opeth still has their traditional acoustic guitar parts that they have always had in their other albums. “Sorceress” the song has that sludge metal kind of feel to it in some parts but it still works in the context of the album. “Will O the Wisp” is a song about a person that is stuck having to contemplate the failures of their life. When they realize that time is not on their side and they tend to smother their friendships, taking more than they can give, they become a failed sort of person if that makes any sense.

Final Thoughts As of The First Initial Analysis

Sorceress may not be the best album in the career of Opeth but it is one of those that has that relaxing quality to it. It is also one of those albums that may not feel like it is 56 minutes long because a few of the tracks are done fairly soon in the blink of an eye.

© 2021 Ara Vahanian

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