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Watershed (Opeth album)

Opeth - Watershed
Studio album by Opeth
Released May 30, 2008
Recorded Winter 2006/2007 – January 10, 2008 (Fascination Street Studios in Örebro, Sweden)[1]
Genre Progressive death metal, progressive rock
Length 54:48
Label Roadrunner
Producer Mikael Åkerfeldt[2] and Jens Bogren[3]
Professional reviews
  • Allmusic Star fullStar fullStar fullStar fullStar empty[4]
  • Artistdirect Star fullStar fullStar fullStar fullStar full[5]
  • Blender Star fullStar fullStar fullStar fullStar empty[6]
  • Star fullStar fullStar fullStar fullStar fullStar fullStar fullStar fullStar fullStar half[7]
  • IGN Star fullStar fullStar fullStar fullStar fullStar fullStar fullStar fullStar emptyStar empty[8]
  • The New York Times favorable[9]
  • Pitchfork Media 7.5/10[10]
  • PopMatters Star fullStar fullStar fullStar fullStar fullStar fullStar fullStar fullStar fullStar empty[11]
  • Sputnikmusic Star fullStar fullStar fullStar fullStar empty[12]
Opeth chronology
The Roundhouse Tapes
The Candlelight Years

Watershed is the ninth full-length studio album by the Swedish heavy metal band Opeth. Released by Roadrunner Records, Watershed is the first studio album by Opeth to feature guitarist Fredrik Åkesson and drummer Martin Axenrot, who replaced longtime guitarist Peter Lindgren and drummer Martin Lopez. The artwork for the album was made by Travis Smith (who has created the artwork for eight previous Opeth releases) in collaboration with Mikael Åkerfeldt.[13] The album has been described as "a major turning point" for Opeth due to the depth of its engagement with progressive rock.[11] It is also, as of 2014, the band's last studio album to contain death growls.


On opening track "Coil", Mikael Åkerfeldt duets with Nathalie Lorichs, who was dating drummer Martin Axenrot at the time.[14] The band has revealed that they were initially going to start the album with what eventually became the second track, "Heir Apparent"; however, they preferred "Coil" as an introductory track for its contrast to "Heir Apparent".[14]


The album was met with "universal acclaim" according to Metacritic, receiving a metascore of 82/100 based on 10 critics.[15]

On Metal Hammer's Critic's Choice Top 50, Watershed was named as the second-best album of 2008 (behind only Metallica's Death Magnetic).[16] In the January/February 2009 issue of Metal Edge, Watershed was voted the number 1 album of 2008.

Track listing Edit

All lyrics written by Mikael Åkerfeldt, all music composed by Åkerfeldt except where noted.
No. Title Length
1. "Coil"   3:11
2. "Heir Apparent"   8:48
3. "The Lotus Eater"   8:48
4. "Burden"   7:41
5. "Porcelain Heart" (Åkerfeldt, Fredrik Åkesson) 7:59
6. "Hessian Peel"   11:24
7. "Hex Omega"   6:57
8. "Derelict Herds" (special edition bonus track; Åkerfeldt, Per Wiberg) 6:29
9. "Bridge of Sighs" (special edition bonus track; Robin Trower cover) 5:56
10. "Den ständiga resan" (special edition bonus track; Marie Fredriksson cover) 4:10
Total length:

Promotional Bonus CD
No. Title Length
1. "Mellotron Heart"   5:14
Total length:

Disc 2 – DVD/Rehearsals
No. Title Length
1. "Prologue"   6:58
2. "From Another Planet"   8:30
3. "The Lotus Eater"   13:48
4. "The Junkmail Studios"   16:23
5. "Epilogue"   6:41
Total length:



Additional musiciansEdit

  • Nathalie Lorichs – guest vocals on "Coil"[3]
  • Lisa Almberg – English horn, oboe
  • Christoffer Wadensten – flute
  • Karin Svensson – violin
  • Andreas Tengberg – cello


  • Mikael Åkerfeldt – production
  • Jens Bogren – engineering, mixing, mastering, production
  • David Castillo – engineering

Release historyEdit

Watershed was released as a standard edition, a 180 gram vinyl edition, and a special edition. The special edition includes three bonus tracks, a bonus DVD with a 5.1 surround sound mix of the entire album (not including bonus tracks), video content featuring rehearsals, and studio footage, as well as expanded artwork. The vinyl release comes in gatefold packaging, and contains the album on two LPs, as well as a CD copy of the album (both including the bonus track "Derelict Herds") and a poster.

"Mellotron Heart" was included on a separate disc with a limited number of copies of the album. It is an alternate recording of the song "Porcelain Heart", performed on mellotron and mini-Moog synthesizers. The cover for the CD is the standard album artwork with the figure and writing desk replaced by a mellotron. The track is also available as a free digital download exclusively for those who pre-ordered the album from The End Records, and to people who insert the CD into their computer via Opendisc.[17]

Region Date Label Format Catalog
Continental Europe May 30, 2008[18] Roadrunner CD RR 7962-2
United Kingdom June 2, 2008[19] Roadrunner CD RR 7962-2
North America June 3, 2008[20] Roadrunner Enhanced CD R 1384409
Australia June 3, 2008 Roadrunner Records (Australia) Enhanced CD RR 7962-8

References Edit

  1. Opeth: Mainman Ready to Rock the Boat. (January 10, 2008). Retrieved on January 12, 2008.
  2. Opeth: Frontman Says New Songs are 'A Bit More Energetic'. (December 21, 2007). Retrieved on January 12, 2008.
  3. 3.0 3.1 Opeth – New Album Title, Track Listing Revealed. (February 5, 2008). Retrieved on February 5, 2008.
  4. True, Christopher M. Watershed review Retrieved on October 13, 2009.
  5. Florino, Rick. Watershed review Retrieved on October 13, 2009.
  6. Watershed review Rertrieved on October 13, 2009.
  7. [1] Retrieved on May 18, 2010.
  8. Ramirez, Carlos. Watershed review Retrieved on October 13, 2009.
  9. Ratliff, Ben. Playlist Retrieved on October 13, 2009.
  10. Lee, Cosmo. Watershed review June 4, 2008. Retrieved on August 28, 2014.
  11. 11.0 11.1 Begrand, Adrien Watershed review June 5, 2008. Retrieved on October 13, 2009.
  12. Stagno, Mike. Watershed review Retrieved on October 13, 2009.
  13. Watershed Artwork Revealed. Retrieved on March 31, 2008.
  14. 14.0 14.1 Hensch, Mark. Opeth Interview. antiMusic. Retrieved on April 28, 2013.
  15. Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; no text was provided for refs named Metacritic
  16. Metal Hammer critics’ top 50 albums of 2008: 3-1 December 23, 2008. Retrieved on November 29, 2009.
  17. Mellotron Heart: Exclusive Digital Delivery for Opeth Pre-Order. Retrieved on June 3, 2008.
  18. Opeth – Watershed
  19. Opeth – Watershed
  20. Opeth – Roadrunner Records. (February 5, 2008). Retrieved on March 26, 2008.

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