For the very first time Damnation will be released on exclusive and deluxe vinyl pressings. The album was unique in Opeth's catalogue as it marked the first time the band had deliberately shifted away from their metal roots to embrace progressive rock, folk and other influences and was the first Opeth album to use all clean vocals.
The album was recorded at the same time as Deliverence, which represented the heavier side of the band and was released in 2002. Both albums were produced by Mikael Åkerfeldt and Steven Wilson who had also produced 2001's Blackwater Park and has since mixed Heritage (2011) and Pale Communion (2014).
“Hello folks! Our old 'partners in crime Music For Nations are planning a 20th-anniversary re-release of one of our odd records, this time Damnation," says Åkerfeldt. "We want our records available on vinyl at all times, and it turns out we can’t keep stock! Our vinyl editions are flying out. I’ve seen it with my own eyes when I helped out in a record shop during the pandemic. Some customers didn’t know they’re buying it from one of the people responsible for the music. Of course I went: ”Good record, good band!”. So before there’s any moaning about ”another reissue, another cash grab” I want to stress out that it really comes down to public demand. We’ll present Steven Wilson’s updated mix (first available in 2015 or thereabouts) on limited edition opaque and transparent vinyl as well as on a picture disc, which I believe is the first time ever.
”Damnation is a special record, even if they’re all special to me. I remember hearing the first mix on headphones in a crummy hotel somewhere in the UK. I had trouble believing it was us, myself, Peter, Lopez, Mendez (as well as ol’ Steve on keys). It was completely different from anything we’d done up to that point, and quite frankly, since. Out of all of our records, I think this one is most suitable for the vinyl format due to the fact that it is not really cluttered with stuff. A pretty airy recording with 5 musicians and done on 2 inch tapes as well. It’s a record I’m immensely proud over and it also remains a fan-favourite I believe.
"At the time I remember getting death threats from metal fans for 'ruining”'the band!," recalls Wilson. "As if it could be anyone’s intention but Mikael’s to do a record like that anyway. Damnation was when everyone understood that he was not going be trapped within the confines of any genre or label, and that the band’s importance and influence would be far reaching. Rightly so Damnation is now seen as a timeless masterpiece, and I’m very proud to have had my part in making it."
The 20th Anniversary versions sees the 2015 re-mix and remaster pressed to standard black vinyl, as well as being available on deluxe and limited colour finishes, and for the very first time available on an exclusive picture disc.
1 - Windowpane
2 - In My Time Of Need
3 - Death Whispered A Lullaby
1 - Closure
2 - Hope Leaves
3 - To Rid The Disease
4 - Ending Credits
5 - Weakness