Opeth @ Town Hall - 02-23-06

The night began with a quick stop at the Heartland Brewery next to the Town Hall. Not sure if there'll be any alcohol at the venue, Sean and I stock up on beer and appetizers to get us through the Evening With Opeth.

When we arrive, we cheer to find that not only are the seats good, but there's a bar upstairs serving everything. Hooray! We scarf down another couple o' drinks and proceed inside. The song Deliverance is blasting through the walls, but it's only a recording. Tonight's special Evening... is a special no-opening-act show that will feature songs in chronological order, spanning their entire discography. So it was bizarre to walk into the theater and see this:

Oh yeah...This was the premiere of the Ballet Diviare performing "...And the Devil Knows Why." The Ballet Diviare is a non-profit contemporary company located in NYC that has received acclaim for incorporating metal (particularly death metal) into their performances. This recital was set to the title track off the Deliverance record. I liked it - a nice change of pace from what you would typically expect at a metal, and great for a band that isn't really typical. After the recital, it was time to ROCK!! First track was Under the Weeping Moon, off the debut record Orchid.

Apparently the band name is no longer Opeth. After asking the crowd what his band's name is, Mikael Akerfeldt explained in his usual soft spoken dry humor, "No. We are Opeth...of SUBURBIA!" And with that the band launched into their next block of songs:

This is from The Night and the Silent Water off of Morningrise. Hearing this live really emphasized the fact that the song (which was never one of my favorites) suffered horribly due to the bad production of the record, a point Mikael was only too happy to point out.

The Amen Corner, off of My Arms Your Hearse. When I saw them in November they played When.
Here's the jerk who didn't understand that you're supposed to sit in a seated performance like this - the reason being so the 6'5" guys above you don't have to come down and threaten to throw your ass off the balcony if you don't sit down and stop blocking your view. He sure was enthusiastic, though!

A couple more pics as they went through their set.

A Fair Judgementnt from Deliverance

Ghost of Perdition from Ghost Reveries.

Despite my all-encompassing love of the Swedish Death Metal, by the time their "last" song, The Grand Conjuration came on, I was pooped, and knew that they would encore with Demon of the Fall, just as they did in November (they did). So I gave Sean's eardrums a break and we left to do some shopping over at Virgin Megastore. As I stumbled out of the theater my overall impressions were 1) great show once again, even though 2) the sounds wasn't as good, which made 3) Mikael's jokes harder to hear this time, but 4) thank god for the chairs! Hearing the stuff from the first two records was awesome, and I left knowing that it was definitely worth the trip in to the city.

And finally, a snapshot of Times Square that turned out to pretty nicely encapsulate my feelings and impressions of spending An Evening With Opeth: