Heritage is a unique cosmic ride. Opeth might have ditched the roaring death vocals and replaced drum maestro Martin Lopez, but they still can't make a bad album.
Instead of merely paying tribute to bands like Camel and King Crimson, the scruffy Swedes have fully embraced their prog-rock roots. Mikael Akerfeldt's clean singing sweeps perfectly over a mixture of 70s psychedelica and Opeth's signature sound.
Acoustic guitars, flutes and pianos foster a murky folk atmosphere, which provide an eerie backdrop to poetic personal lyrics. Scattered heavy sections create an abrupt change of pace, but listeners waiting to hear mind-boggling drumming and technical fretwork will be disappointed.
Heritage also loses some impact during the last three tracks which sound like an anticlimactic jam session.
Despite not reaching the quality of their previous work, Opeth have pushed into a brave direction, one which might make you appreciate your dad's dusty old records.
By Jimmy Ness