Concert Review – Opeth – 13 Nov 2011

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.

About Reggie

Just a dude writing a heavy metal blog and always on the prowl for a cool metal show. I am also a family man...first and foremost!

Posted on November 15, 2011, in Concert Reviews and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 5 Comments.

  1. 8 more days until I get to see this tour. So can’t wait. For me it will be my first time seeing both as I’ve been in the wrong state every time Opeth has come to America and this is their first big tour in Europe in a while. Pain of Salvation will be a treat for me. I’m super excited to see them too. Cool to know Fandango is on the setlist, one of my faves from them, “watch them dance!”. Seeing two of my favorites in one night is going to be awesome. How long of sets did each band get? I see the pic of the acoustic guitar, so I’m guessing that “Face of Melinda” or “Harvest” is on the setlist, maybe both. I’ll guess that there may be some stuff off Damnation played too. Can’t wait, thanks for the spoilerfree review!!

    • I would so love to call you and tell you what they played. To the best of my memory they didn’t play anything from Damnation. Remember though, Opeth is still new enough that I do not have their discography memorized. Some albums I know well, but some I am still learning…like Still Life and My Arms, Your Hearse…two more hints. They played one song that I have been listening to over and over and I will give you a hint…it has something to do with our other blog. I hope they play it for you too. I really think you are going to enjoy the evening. Pain of Salvation was 40 minutes I think and Opeth was right at about 2 hours. I can’t wait to hear your take on the show. Or your review if you do one.

      • OOOOOOOOO, “Throat of Winter”??? That would be a big surprise!! Don’t tell me, but I got a good feeling about that one. I like this game of guessing the setlist before the concert. Unfortunately I can’t make the Amorphis show tonight, so I will be making a stab at a concert review next Friday for the Opeth show.

  2. Thanks for sharing the clips – would love to have been there but with Steven Wilson, Fish, Yes and Alabama 3 gigs this month plus next year’s holiday to pay for I really couldn’t afford another trek to London 😦 Saw the RAH show though, which was awesome. Glad you had a good time and are enjoying Opeth generally – they’re one of my favourite discoveries of the last few years, a singular band with a really original voice. Heritage isn’t up there with Blackwater Park, Deliverance and Ghost Reveries for me but I’m curious to see how the songs translate live. Must catch ’em next time around.

    • Heritage is good, but definitately not the Opeth we got to know and love. At least they didn’t pull a Metallica with trying something different. 70’s prog never really did much for me, but Opeth did a good job. I know what you mean about trying to see shows. I dont know anyone that can afford to see everything that comes to town, especially in England. There are just too many to choose from. I am thankful that metal is relatively inexpensive. I had to sacrifice seeing some shows in order to see others. Plus, I have to ditch my wife when I go see metal shows so I have to be sure I am going to see something I am fairly certain I am going to enjoy…to make it all worth it. She is not a metal fan so i usually go alone or with a fellow metalhead.

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