OPETH — Lamentations, Live At Shepherd's Bush Empire, 2003

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OPETH - Lamentations, Live At Shepherd's Bush Empire, 2003 cover
3.84 | 29 ratings | 3 reviews
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Movie · 2003

Filed under Progressive Metal


1. Introduction (1:25)
2. Windowpane (9:15)
3. In My Time of Need (6:37)
4. Death Whispered a Lullaby (7:11)
5. Closure (9:45)
6. Hope Leaves (6:11)
7. To Rid the Disease (7:11)
8. Ending Credits (4:22)
9. Harvest (6:15)
10. Weakness (6:04)
11. Master's Apprentices (10:34)
12. The Drapery Falls (10:56)
13. Deliverance (12:38)
14. The Leper Affinity (11:01)
15. A Fair Judgement (13:51)

Total Time: 123:16


- Mikael Åkerfeldt / vocals, guitars
- Peter Lindgren / guitars
- Martin Mendez / bass
- Martin Lopez / drums

Guest musician:
- Per Wiberg / keyboards, backing vocals

About this release

1xDVD Koch Records/Sony BMG Music For Nations, KOC-DV-9540 (2004)

Thanks to progkidjoel for the updates


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Specialists/collaborators reviews

Opeth have a thing with classic UK venues. Lamentations was their first DVD and it was shot at Shepherd's Bush. The Roundhouse and Royal Albert Hall would follow suit. Lamentations captures the band on the Damnation/Deliverance tour and mainly concentrates on the material from those two albums. The only other album featured is Blackwater Park, making this set into a sort of Wilson-years retrospective.

Especially Damnation features in all glory and is played in its entity during the delightful first half of the show. The band goes fluently through the material and Akerfeldt delivers his clean vocals just perfectly. It's a shame that this quiet material didn't really seem to connect well with the young and very meteul audience. Prog fans would have greatly enjoyed this delicate mix of early Camel and Floyd with Nick Drake. The performances evoke a mood very similar to Swedish prog acts such as Landberk and Paatos.

New man in the band is Per Wiberg who adds great backing vocals (mixed a bit too much to the background though) and of course excellent keyboards, often changing the arrangements slightly in comparison to the studio originals. The most outstanding part of the set would be Closure, where the bands explores the psychedelic closing section more thoroughly and more intensely then on Damnation. The second part of the set features heavier material and is more likely to please the metal fans. These songs deviate less from the studio versions but they sound a bit rougher and harsher, which suits them fine.

The audio on this release is superb, the DTS version blasts from the speakers and especially during the quieter songs, it brings out a lot of details. The drums and bass are nicely upfront and have a lot of oomph, with a deep kick and a very warm and round sound. The photography could have been better though, unless you're a fan of extreme close-ups and think it's fun to be able to count Akerfeldt's nasal hairs.

Overall a superb release that should primarily please the more prog-oriented part of Opeth's fanbase. DVD's are always fans-only territory, but it would seem a bit iffy to rate this 2 stars just for that reason. So, for fans only, but excellent it is.

Members reviews

I really like a few studio albums of this band, especially "Blackwater Park" and "Watershed", so I bought this slipcase compilation by Koch Records with three studio albums and this exclusive live CD. That's why I will just talk about what I hear and not what I see on this release.

And what I hear is not very positive. The band divided its set in two halfs, the first one is based on their acoustic stuff from the "Damnation" album. The acoustic album has a really introspective atmosphere on the album, but it doesn't work at all on stage. Each song seems to be alike, the live versions sound exactly like the studio versions, the band has no contact with the silent and hypnotized crowd and there is no magic in the air. After a few songs, this first part of the album makes you fall asleep because of its infinite boredom. The most interesting song is the only one which is not included on the "Damnation" album, "Harvest", which develops a magic warmth and gives me at least some goose bumps and chills.

The second half of the album is a lot heavier and more progressive and wakes the crowd up a little bit. But the heavier song are performed with a lack of passion and intesity and work less well as the studio versions. The band does some routine work but I can't feel any passion in it. This part is a little bit more enthousiastic than the first part, but not by much.

Another problem of this release is - due to legal problems - that the setlist is mostly limited on the three last albums and not very diversified. That's a sad thing because the early works of the band had some magic moments and something powerful and fresh.

I can't recommend this CD (or even DVD) and would give the advice to listen to the studio albums instead.
A good first live recording from one of modern prog's, and metal's, finest. Opeth's first DVD, Lamentations Live at Sheperd's Bush Empire, is a good showcase of the two extremes the band is able to play flawlessly - Acoustic, folky based prog rock, and death metal, often with progressive tendencies and sections. The two sets are recorded lovingly and played flawlessly. The atmosphere is brutal at times, and beautiful at others. The lighting suits the concert perfectly - Black and grey, laced with shades of green, purple and blue. The band is tight, and the interplay between the members is perfect. The presence of the now full-time member Per Wilberg on keyboards adds a little extra atmosphere, like a finishing touch. Unfortunately, Wilberg's presence is hidden in the metal tracks, which may dissapoint.

The playing is all fantastic on this disc - Some stellarly soft moments, and some ear-bleedingly brutal segments. The two things which make Opeth special for me are their unpredictability and their quick changes from fast to slow, heavy to soft, a angry to heartbroken, or any combination of the few. These always change up the atmosphere and emotion of the songs, and they are displayed here in full force.

My only complaint is about the acoustic set - I find Damnation to be one of the band's least dynamic and thrilling albums, although this may be a plus for a viewer who is a large fan of this album. The second set, however, is quite a bit better, playing two of the band's best (and heaviest!) tracks in The Drapery Falls and Deliverance. Its hard to believe a band can play such soft music so perfectly and genuinely, and then play such brutal metal with such vigor and enthusiasm. It really does still surprise me after multiple listens and watches of this DVD and the album it concerns - At one moment I'm stunned by the beauty of Hope Leaves, and the next I'm picking myself up off the floor from Master's Apprentices.

This DVD never reaches into 5 star territory in my opinion - Its a great showcase of the band, but it is not a masterpiece in any way, so I'm giving this DVD four stars.

Stay prog.


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