Pale Communion

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Pale Communion
Cover art by Travis Smith
Studio album by Opeth
Released 25 August 2014 (2014-08-25)
Recorded Rockfield Studios
Genre Progressive rock, Progressive metal, Jazz fusion
Length 55:45
Label Roadrunner
Producer Mikael Åkerfeldt
Opeth chronology
Heritage
(2011)
Pale Communion
(2014)
Singles from Pale Communion
  1. "Cusp of Eternity"
    Released: 3 June 2014

Pale Communion is the eleventh studio album by Swedish heavy metal band Opeth. The album was released on 25 August 2014 through Roadrunner Records.[1] The album was produced by Mikael Åkerfeldt and mixed by Steven Wilson.[2] Pale Communion is the first album with keyboardist Joakim Svalberg after the departure of Per Wiberg in 2011.

Musical style[edit]

Mikael Åkerfeldt said of the album, "I wanted to do something more melodic with this album, so there's stronger vocal melodies and more melodies overall for this album."[3] Greg Kennelty of Metal Injection said the album does not contain "growls or death metal vocals".[4] He also described the album as "the missing link between Damnation and Ghost Reveries or if Heritage was written directly after Ghost Reveries without Watershed having ever existed."[4]

Artwork[edit]

The cover art was designed by Travis Smith, who has designed several previous Opeth album covers. The artwork contains Latin text. The left panel quotes Axel Oxenstierna: "Don't you know, my son, with how little wisdom the world is governed?" (An nesci, mi fili, quantilla prudentia mundus regatur?). The middle panel quotes Terence: "In these days friends are won through flattery, the truth gives birth to hate." (Hoc tempore obsequium amicos, veritas odium parit, Andria, vv. 67-68). The right panel quotes Marcus Valerius Martialis: "He grieves truly who grieves without a witness." (Ille dolet vere qui sine teste dolet, Epigrammata, I, 33).[5]

Reception[edit]

Pale Communion was mostly well received by critics. Allmusic's Thom Jurek called the album more focused and refined than Heritage and also called it nearly unlimited in its creativity. Dom Lawson of The Guardian called it an admirably coherent collection of songs that are as uncompromisingly intricate and strange as they are incisively melodic. The album holds a 75 out of 100 rating on Metacritic, which means generally favorable.

Professional ratings
Aggregate scores
Source Rating
Metacritic 75/100[6]
Review scores
Source Rating
About.com 4/5 stars[7]
AllMusic 4.5/5 stars[8]
Alternative Press 4/5 stars[9]
Blabbermouth.net 10/10 stars[10]
Exclaim! 7/10[11]
The Guardian 5/5 stars[12]
The List 5/5 stars[13]
Pitchfork 4.3/10[14]
PopMatters 8/10[15]
AntiHero Magazine 9.3/10[16]

Track listing[edit]

All songs written and composed by Mikael Åkerfeldt, except where noted. 

No. Title Length
1. "Eternal Rains Will Come"   6:48
2. "Cusp of Eternity"   5:35
3. "Moon Above, Sun Below"   10:52
4. "Elysian Woes"   4:47
5. "Goblin" (instrumental) 4:32
6. "River"   7:30
7. "Voice of Treason"   8:00
8. "Faith in Others"   7:39
9. "Solitude" (live) (special edition bonus track) (Black Sabbath cover) 5:56
10. "Var kommer barnen in" (live) (special edition bonus track) (Hansson de Wolfe United cover) 5:52
Total length:
67:33

Personnel[edit]

Opeth[edit]

Additional personnel[edit]

Chart positions[edit]

Chart (2014) Peak
position
Australian Albums (ARIA)[17] 17
Austrian Albums (Ö3 Austria)[18] 11
Belgian Albums (Ultratop Flanders)[19] 142
Belgian Albums (Ultratop Wallonia)[20] 179
Canadian Albums (Billboard)[21] 9
Danish Albums (Hitlisten)[22] 13
Dutch Albums (MegaCharts)[23] 23
Finnish Albums (Suomen virallinen lista)[24] 1
German Albums (Offizielle Top 100)[25] 3
Hungarian Albums (MAHASZ)[26] 5
Italian Albums (FIMI)[27] 37
New Zealand Albums (Recorded Music NZ)[28] 26
Norwegian Albums (VG-lista)[29] 5
Polish Albums (ZPAV)[30] 42
Swiss Albums (Schweizer Hitparade)[31] 24
UK Albums (OCC)[32] 14
US Billboard 200[33] 19
US Top Hard Rock Albums (Billboard)[34] 2
US Top Rock Albums (Billboard)[35] 4
US Top Tastemaker Albums (Billboard)[36] 3

References[edit]

  1. ^ "OPETH Album Officially Pushed Back To August". Metal Injection. 8 May 2014. Retrieved 8 May 2014. 
  2. ^ "Opeth's "Pale Communion" Coming June 17". Roadrunner Records. 7 April 2014. Retrieved 8 April 2014. 
  3. ^ Dick, Jonathan (21 March 2014). "Opeth Started from the Bottom, Now They're Here". Vice. Retrieved 8 April 2014. 
  4. ^ a b Kennelty, Greg (27 March 2014). "First Impressions of the New Untitled OPETH Album, A Track-By-Track Review". metalinjection.net. Retrieved 8 April 2014. 
  5. ^ "OPETH Pale Communion Album Art Revealed!". Metal Injection. 27 May 2014. Retrieved 27 May 2014. 
  6. ^ "Reviews for Pale Communion by Opeth". Metacritic. Retrieved 24 August 2014. 
  7. ^ Bowar, Chad. "Opeth - Pale Communion Review". About.com. Retrieved 15 September 2014. 
  8. ^ Jurek, Thom. "Pale Communion - Opeth". AllMusic. Retrieved 24 August 2014. 
  9. ^ Slessor, Dan (20 August 2014). "Opeth - Pale Communion". Alternative Press. Retrieved 15 September 2014. 
  10. ^ Van Horn, Ray (29 September 2014). "Opeth - Pale Communion". Blabbermouth.net. Retrieved 29 September 2014. 
  11. ^ Kitteringham, Sarah (22 August 2014). "Opeth - Pale Communion". Exclaim!. Retrieved 3 September 2014. 
  12. ^ Lawson, Dom (21 August 2014). "Opeth: Pale Communion review – strange, intricate prog-metal genius". The Guardian. Retrieved 24 August 2014. 
  13. ^ Cope, Chris (19 August 2014). "Opeth: Pale Communion". The List. Retrieved 25 August 2014. 
  14. ^ Currin, Grayson (28 August 2014). "Opeth: Pale Communion". Pitchfork. Retrieved 3 September 2014. 
  15. ^ Ezell, Brice (28 August 2014). "Opeth: Pale Communion". PopMatters. Retrieved 3 September 2014. 
  16. ^ Thomas Woroniak. "Album Review: OPETH - Pale Communion". antiheromagazine.com. AntiHero Magazine. Retrieved October 31, 2014. 
  17. ^ "Opeth – Pale Communion". Australiancharts.com. Hung Medien. Retrieved 4 September 2014.
  18. ^ "Opeth – Pale Communion" (in German). Austriancharts.at. Hung Medien. Retrieved 4 September 2014.
  19. ^ "Opeth – Pale Communion" (in Dutch). Ultratop.be. Hung Medien. Retrieved 4 September 2014.
  20. ^ "Opeth – Pale Communion" (in French). Ultratop.be. Hung Medien. Retrieved 4 September 2014.
  21. ^ "Opeth Album & Song Chart History" Billboard Canadian Albums Chart for Opeth. Retrieved 4 September 2014.
  22. ^ "Opeth – Pale Communion". Danishcharts.com. Hung Medien. Retrieved 6 September 2014.
  23. ^ "Opeth – Pale Communion" (in Dutch). Dutchcharts.nl. Hung Medien. Retrieved 4 September 2014.
  24. ^ "Opeth: Pale Communion" (in Finnish). Musiikkituottajat – IFPI Finland. Retrieved 4 September 2014.
  25. ^ "Longplay-Chartverfolgung at Musicline" (in German). Musicline.de. Phononet GmbH. Retrieved 4 September 2014.
  26. ^ "Archívum › Kereső – lista és dátum szerint" (in Hungarian). Mahasz. LightMedia. Select Lista as Top 40 album, then select Ev as 2014 then select Het as 35 then click on Kereses Retrieved 4 September 2014.
  27. ^ "Artisti - Classifica settimanale WK 35 (dal 25-08-2014 al 31-08-2014)" (in Italian). Federazione Industria Musicale Italiana. Retrieved 4 September 2014. 
  28. ^ "Opeth – Pale Communion". Charts.org.nz. Hung Medien. Retrieved 4 September 2014.
  29. ^ "Opeth – Pale Communion". Norwegiancharts.com. Hung Medien. Retrieved 4 September 2014.
  30. ^ "Oficjalna lista sprzedaży :: OLIS - Official Retail Sales Chart". OLiS. Polish Society of the Phonographic Industry. Retrieved 19 September 2014.
  31. ^ "Opeth – Pale Communion". Swisscharts.com. Hung Medien. Retrieved 4 September 2014.
  32. ^ "Opeth | Artist | Official Charts". UK Albums Chart Retrieved 4 September 2014.
  33. ^ "Opeth Album & Song Chart History" Billboard 200 for Opeth. Retrieved 4 September 2014.
  34. ^ "Opeth Album & Song Chart History" Billboard Top Hard Rock Albums for Opeth. Retrieved 4 September 2014.
  35. ^ "Opeth Album & Song Chart History" Billboard Top Rock Albums for Opeth. Retrieved 4 September 2014.
  36. ^ "Opeth Album & Song Chart History" Billboard Top Tastemaker Albums for Opeth. Retrieved 4 September 2014.