Damnation is the seventh full-length studio album by Opeth. It was released on 22 April 2003, five months after Deliverance, which was recorded at the same time. Damnation was produced by Steven Wilson. Mikael Åkerfeldt dedicated both albums to his grandmother, who died in a car accident during the time the albums were being recorded.
The album was a radical departure from Opeth's typical death metal sound, and the first Opeth release to exclusively utilize clean vocals, clean guitars, and prominent mellotron, as well as being inspired by 1970s progressive rock, which typically features no heavy riffs or extended fast tempos. Despite the change in style from Opeth's previous albums, Damnation was critically acclaimed and boosted their popularity, leading to the release of Lamentations on DVD in late 2003.
In a rave review for Sputnikmusic, Mike Stagno wrote that Damnation is a progressive rock album that departs entirely from the extreme metal elements of Opeth's previous work, and stands as one of the best albums released in recent years. Ned Raggett of Pitchfork Media also felt that it succeeds without Opeth's previous death metal style, and showcases each band member's technical abilities on what is "the most surprising and entertaining album" in Opeth's discography.
A music video was created for an edited version of "Windowpane". The vocal melody in the chorus of "To Rid the Disease" is borrowed from a track recorded by Mikael Åkerfeldt's sideproject Sörskogen, "Mordet i Grottan".