Thursday, August 28, 2014

August 28th, 2014 - Pale Ale Communion

Evening my music and brew brethren!  The Meista here with another "epic" pairing for you... tonight pairing the wonderful brand-spanking new Opeth album, "Pale Communion" and a Copper Cone Pale Ale (Release #63) from Epic Brewing Company!!

The brilliant "Pale Communion" was released here in the states this week on August 25th, 2014.  It is the 11th studio album by the amazingly talented Swedish progressive rock/progressive death metal band Opeth.  If you are looking for the band's death metal sound on this album, you won't find it.  This is purely progressive rock... and an excellent example of it!  More akin to the progressive and acoustic work on albums "Damnation" and "Heritage", "Pale Communion" is most definitely an intricate and melodic prog rock album with influence from early Genesis, King Crimson, and Yes.  Of the album's direction, frontman Mikael Åkerfeldt stated, "I wanted to do something more melodic with this album, so there's stronger vocal melodies and more melodies overall."  Musically, "Pale Communion" is richly textured, harmoniously complex, and beautifully melodic.  Åkerfeld's vocals are hauntingly emotional, intense, and melancholy.  The more I listen to this album the more I love it!  Each song is a profoundly complex musical journey. The full album:
  1. "Eternal Rains Will Come"
  2. "Cusp Of Eternity"
  3. "Moon Above, Sun Below"
  4. "Elysian Woes"
  5. "Goblin"
  6. "River"
  7. "Voice Of Treason"
  8. "Faith In Others" 
Personnel on the album include Åkerfeldt (vocals, guitar, production, and art direction), Fredrik Åkesson (guitar), Joakim Svalberg (piano and keyboards), Martín Méndez (bass guitar), and Martin Axenrot (drums and percussion).  I picked up "Pale Communion" from the Heavy Metal Shop ( check it out!!

The Copper Cone Pale Ale is a 6.7% American Pale Ale (APA) from Salt Lake City brewery Epic Brewing Company.  Release #63 of this lovely APA is brewed with Ultra Premium Maris Otter malt, Premium Weyermann Light Munich, CaraMunich II, CaraMunich I, and a touch of Briess Carapils malts along with CTZ, Centennial, and Amarillo hops with Amarillo in the hopback and finally dry hopped with Simcoe.  The Copper Cone pours a very cloudy (almost completely opaque) orange copper with a dirty off-white 1-finger head that leaves intricate spider web lacing.  The nose is characterized by aromas of pine, sweet grains, and doughy yeast.   There are notes of pine needles, hop oil, exotic teas, and soft caramel.  The mouthfeel is rather smooth and slightly sticky, but with a dry and bitter finish.  The taste is like "Pale Communion", intricate and a melody of flavors.  There are notes of caramel and bready malts up front followed by citrus (tangerine, lemon zest, grapefruit) and piney hops.  The finish is dry, slightly bitter, and peppery.


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