I’ll probably have to resort to hurting myself physically, due process of just finding out about this record. Apparently, it was released in May last year, yet it seems to have slipped by me. I could argue that 1) the lack of time and 2) the shift of focus to discovering new bands have both taken me away from following up to news about Opeth and PT related stuff, but I’ll probably fail miserably, since the link to Storm Corrosion’s release has been up there on the front page of PT’s website for quite some time, I presume. Me, I just found out about it by following a result way off from the first pages of an obscure google search.
But that’s just life and Murphy’s laws, I think.
With regards to Opeth, you could call me an ‘opethian’ of sorts. As the years went by, Mikael Åkerfeldt & Co. have slowly climbed up my ladder of favorite bands and at this current stand-point in time, I rank them as #1. I even have this
to prove it. Porcupine Tree is also very high up in the charts, the first half of their discography have accumulated, along-side Opeth’s releases, probably hundreds of hours of airtime. Yet, the latest musical offerings of the two bands have fallen short of my expectations, not so much in style but as in a conceptually flawed execution. Steven Wilson’s ‘Grace for Drowning’ did however turn the tide back on, yet there is still something missing.
With all that said and done, I am left with actually saying something about this colab work of sorts of the two ‘prog’ frontmen of now and all procrastinating set aside, the truth is that I don’t have anything relevant to say about it. The minimalistic approach to this album seems to be what lies at fault here (at least for me). Sure, Steven has dabbled in this sort of territory before, but Mikael is treading on thin water, his guitar work (while brilliant as always) doesn’t have any ‘oomph’ to it, therefore doesn’t put out any kind of emotion. It just feels flat and under-used. Gavin Harrison’s drum solo at the end of Hag helps move things up a notch, but I feel it’s too less (and I would have said too late if it were the closing track of the album). The only song that caught my interest for the full runtime was the title track (I’m gonna set aside the whole ‘identical song, album, band name’ rant), but one out of six is pretty slim percentage overall if you ask me.
With that being said, I’m not going to rate this album, it would do it injustice I think. You’ll have to listen to it for yourself and decide whether it’s your coup of tea or not. I would have been more hyped if this would have came out in the 90’s period of the two bands, but taking in consideration their stylistic appearance of now, that measure of fandom falls a bit short from what it could be.
As for me, I’ll be awaiting the new solo release from Steven Wilson (set for February), so expect a review of it, from either myself or Marco I presume, as soon as it’s humanly possible.