Concert Review – Opeth – 13 Nov 2011
Posted by Reggie
After having missed four previous opportunities to see Opeth in the last three years, I was bound and determined to not miss this show. Opeth headlined the O2 Brixton London this past 13th Nov 2011. It was an evening that I was very excited for, for several reasons.
1. It’s Opeth
2. I have never seen Opeth live
3. Pain of Salvation opened which meant that I was going to see two bands I have never seen live before.
4. It’s Opeth
I am a fairly new fan of Opeth. My first experience with the band was through their video for Porcelain Heart off Watershed. In a short amount of time I back-purchased just about everything they recorded. Needless to say, Opeth has quickly become a top-10 band for me. I was anticipating this show even more than seeing the Big Four earlier this year. The anticipation paid off.
On with the review. First of all Brixton is what the locals would call seedy. The venue is nice enough and the sound was actually pretty good inside. The fans were loud and proud as always. I could have never asked for a more respectful and polite crowd of metalheads. But, the neighborhood is not one that I would choose to go to for any other reason than going to that venue. If you live there, sorry to offend, but what I saw from the tube station to the venue was not pretty; kind of scary for my sheltered existence. And, there were more people doing drugs outside in plain sight than I have ever seen anywhere in England. But the venue had some good acoustics and that is what’s important.
Pain of Salvation kicked things off with a set list of songs foreign to me. I actually only recognized one song (Fandango), probably because I only own Remedy Lane and that’s it and I do not know it THAT well. They did have a great set and were a pleasure to see. If I had the choice I would have preferred to see Katatonia like U.S. metal fans did on Opeth’s tour. However, Pain of Salvation played such a great set that I am so glad I got to see them. They are #1 on my list to purchase a few more of their albums…as soon as I can get iTunes running again. Not sure what’s up with that…
If you have seen Opeth before you probably already know that these guys are nothing less than damn near perfect. I thought the DVD at the Royal Albert Hall was great, but seeing them live…shit man! I am very impressed with their ability to sound so damn good live. I don’t want to spoil anyone’s future good time by going into great detail about the set list or the particulars of song arrangement or what they did between songs. If you have tickets to this tour do yourself a favor and try not to get sick or injured because you will be missing out. I think one thing that Opeth fans already know is that Mikael really likes to talk to the audience and makes them (us) feel more a part of the show. He tells stories, jokes, etc, and it makes for a nice evening with some quality music. I think each set is tailored to the particular location they are playing in. At least that’s the impression I got with the little George Michael bit. I think the only fans that might not like this particular tour are the ones that absolutely hate Heritage. I can’t think of any other reason why someone would leave the show disappointed.
As far as I am concerned, I have much more admiration for Heritage after seeing a significant portion of it played live. It rocks and you get caught up in the moment. Opeth puts on a show not just a concert. It was a great night. It makes me sorely regret not going out of my way to see them before. I still kick myself for not going to the Royal Albert Hall, but…seeing Opeth two days ago made up for it. Opeth, like Dream Theater, will forever and always be on my metal radar for concerts. Below are a couple of videos I took from the show. Again, spoiler alert here especially with Porcelain Heart. The Devil’s Orchard is not surprising. If you have tickets in the near future it’s up to you if you want to see what’s coming or just wait and see. I had a great time! If you get the chance get your butts out there to see Opeth. Enjoy.