...before you reconciled Opeth's brutal vocals with the amazing musicianship? Maybe others have a talent that I don't, but I had no clue WTF Mikael was singing in most of the songs I was sampling when I first discovered the band. Until I looked the words up, I didn't really know that he was a poet...albeit a dark one. What kept me coming back at first were the tastiest riffs I'd heard since...well, y'all would probably laugh at me if I mentioned that band (hey, I was 12). Opeth opened up a whole new world to me. A world where death metal fretwork was intertwined with thought-provoking lyrics. Who knew? I didn't. What I did know was that I was getting so bored with the metal scene, and even angrier the older I got (kind of the opposite of the norm). I needed SOMETHING. So I decided to embrace a genre that I had long since ignored (and if you'd grown up with garbage like King Diamond, Armored Saint, and Venom...you would have ignored it, too). I admit that it took me a while to accept Mikael's growling. And I know that this is not necessarily a new topic on the boards, but I admit that I needed to re-evaluate everything I held near and dear about metal before I understood exactly what it was I was missing for so long: A NEW WAY TO EXPRESS MY FUCKING ANGER. I always knew I needed that, but I also always knew that the medium would have to be of substantial quality. I'm so happy that I opened my mind. So happy, in fact, that I've researched local voice coaches to teach me to do the same thing (ya never know, I was in the choir in middle school...). So I guess my question is: How long did it honestly take you to appreciate the brutal/beautiful dichotomy that is Opeth? Or were you just smitten from the beginning?