Band Photo: Opeth (?)
From: Sörskogen / Stockolm, Sweden
Last Known Status: Active
Latest Opeth News
Below is our complete Opeth news coverage, including columns and articles pertaining to the band. Some articles listed may be indirectly related, such as side projects of the band members, etc.
Note: We began associating news directly with bands in late 2003. Therefore, earlier band news may not be listed on this page.
It could be said that Porcupine Tree owe a large chunk of their fanbase to Opeth, and vice versa. Steven Wilson, frontman and production bon vivant behind the grandiose British progressive rockers, has produced Opeth's last three records — 2001's "Blackwater Park," 2002's "Deliverance" and 2003's "Damnation." But associations aside, "People either like the music or they don't — so they must be liking it," Wilson said.
"I think we've both kind of benefited from [the connection], although that was never the intention," he continued. "We just worked together because we had great admiration for each other's bands. I have to say, it's been great seeing a lot more young metal kids at the shows, digging what we're doing."
Alas, extensive touring and his commitment to Porcupine Tree have prevented Wilson from helming the new Opeth LP, which the band started working on last month. Porcupine Tree — whose new disc, "Deadwing," drops May 3 — will hit the road May 13 in Washington, D.C., for an all-encompassing U.S. tour. In a nod to the band's roots, the two former guitarists from long-running prog-rock titans King Crimson will be splitting the opening slot: Adrian Belew will open the East Coast gigs, while Robert Fripp will cover the West.
"Deadwing" will be released in three formats: a generic stereo mix, a DVD-Audio disc with a surround mix, and a special edition combining the two with a 72-page hardback book. The album is based on a script Wilson wrote several years ago. "I like hanging an album on one particular subject," he said. "It's important that every record have some sort of thematic unity." The story focuses on a man who "arrives at a point in his life fate never intended" and involves the "unraveling of the situation, to get him back to where he should have been." It's a surreal "ghost story," said Wilson, and "the idea's ultimately that this album will form a kind of companion with [the] feature film."
Sweden's Opeth are on the verge of inking a new record deal with Roadrunner Records, informed sources have told Blabbermouth.net. The band, who were previously signed to the now-defunct British label Music For Nations Records, recently entered Fascination Street studios in Örebro, Sweden to begin recording their eight album, tentatively due later in the year.
Opeth will take part in the inaugural Sounds of the Underground tour, which is slated to kick off June 25 in Lowell, Massachusetts. Other bands scheduled to take part in the trek include Clutch, Lamb of God, Gwar, Poison the Well, From Autumn to Ashes, Unearth, Every Time I Die, Chimaira, Strapping Young Lad, Madball and DevilDriver.
Sounds of the Underground Tour, which features Clutch, Gwar, Lamb of God, Opeth, Unearth, Strapping Young Lad, All that Remains, The Red Chord, DevilDriver and many others, will run through the US and Canada this summer. The second internet pre-sale will be April 12th starting at 4pm EST at tix.artistarena.com/soundsoftheunderground.
The following shows will be available:
Jun. 25 Lowell, MA Tsongas Arena - public on sale April 16
Jun. 26 Philadelphia, PA Festival Pier - public on sale April 16
Jul. 03 Montreal, QC Stade Uniprix - public on sale April 16
Jul. 04 Toronto, ON Arrow Hall - public on sale April 16
Jul. 05 Cleveland, OH Scene Pavilion - public on sale April 16
Jul. 12 Atlanta, GA Hi Fi Buys - public on sale April 22
Jul. 13 Orlando, FL Tinker Field - public on sale April 16
Jul. 15 Dallax, TX Smirnoff Parking Lot - public on sale April 22
Jul. 20 Phoenix, AX Mesa Amphitheatre - public on sale April 16
Jul. 26 Vancouver, BC Pacific Coliseum - public on sale April 16
Jul. 28 Edmonton, AB Rexhall - public on sale April 16
Jul. 29 Saskatoon, SK Credit Union Center - public on sale April 16
Other tour dates: More...
Dates are slowly leaking out for the Sounds of the Undergroud Tour that will feature Lamb of God, Clutch, Poison The Well, Opeth, Unearth, From Autumn To Ashes, Chimaira, Norma Jean, Every Time I Die, Strapping Young Lad, Throwdown, High On Fire, DevilDriver, All That Remains, A Life Once Lost and more.
Here are some of the unconfirmed initial dates for the tour:
June 25 Lowell, MA - Paul E. Tsongas Arena
June 30 Winston-Salem, NC - Dixie Classic Fairgrounds
July 01 Toronto, ON - The Docks
July 02 Sayreville, NJ - Starland Ballroom
July 05 Cleveland, OH - The Scene Pavilion
July 09 Sauget, IL - Pop's Lot
July 13 Orlando, FL - Tinker Field
Sounds of the Underground is offering the "internet community" a presale. Tickets will be available before they go on sale to the general public at this link. Also service fees will be lower than most outlets.
The current Sounds of the Underground lineup is:
Poison the Well
Every Time I Die
High on Fire
Strapping Young Lad
All that Remains
A Life Once Lost
The Red Chord
Fear Before the March of Flames
With very special guests GWAR and one more headliner to be announced
A cadre of hard rock acts led by Opeth, Unearth, Poison The Well and Clutch are uniting for the inaugural Sounds of the Underground summer festival tour. The bill will hit the road in North America in late June and run through late July.
With organizers promising the addition of a notable headlining act, others already confirmed for the full tour are From Autumn To Ashes, Chimaira, Norma Jean, Every Time I Die, Strapping Young Lad, Throwdown, High On Fire, DevilDriver, All That Remains, A Life Once Lost and veteran horrorcore group Gwar, which will present a "halftime show."
Madball has been drafted for the eastern half of the tour, with Terror picking up on Western dates. Regional additions include the Red Chord (East Coast), Fear Before The March Of Flames (Midwest, Southeast) and Himsa (West).
"This tour will show the masses that real music is alive and well," Unearth's Trevor Phipps says. "The Sounds of the Underground will prove that you don't need 'pop-culture' to embrace your sound and way of life."
The tour is being produced by Face the Music Touring agent Tim Borror, Ferret label executive/artist manager Paul Conroy, Ferret label owner Carl Severson and artist manager Larry Mazer. The group has pledged to keep ticket prices below $30.
Dates for the trek have not yet been announced. The Sounds of the Underground Tour website will launch soon with full details.
The "Sounds of the Underground Tour" will rival Ozzfest and tickets will range from $20- $25. Bands include:
Lamb of God(main stage headliner)
Gwar (second stage headliner)
All That Remains
Poison the Well
Strapping Young Lad
A Life Once Lost
Every Time I Die
Terror / Madball (half of the tour each)
British art rock quartet Porcupine Tree (Steven Wilson, lead vocals, guitars; Richard Barbieri, keyboards; Colin Edwin, bass; Gavin Harrison, drums) are currently putting the final touches on their forthcoming new album, which is entitled "Deadwing."
The follow up to the band's 2002 release "In Absentia," "Deadwing" is scheduled for a Tuesday May 2005 release.
Produced by principal songwriter/guitarist Steven Wilson, "Deadwing" features a total of ten new tracks including the title track, which is whopping ten-minute epic as well as the first radio single, "Shallow," which in Wilson's own words is "the equivalent of a big, dumb rock song, but in the way that people who are not dumb would do." The rest of the album features songs with titles ranging from "Lazarus," to "Halo," (which features Adrien Belew on guitar), and "Arriving Somewhere But Not Here." Other guests on the album include Opeth's Mikael Ackerfeldt who lends backing vocals and secondary guitar work to a number of tracks. And for the devout, Deadwing also contains the newly re-recorded bonus track "Shesmovedon" which originally appeared on the band's Lightbulb Sun album.
Here's from Opeth's official site:
"Opeth will be entering Fashination street studios on March 15 to record their 8th yet untitled opus. The band are currently in rehearsal mode, which is a rare occasion having recorded the last four records without rehearsing. The recording will be overseen by the uprising recording mogul Jens Bogren. As of today no names for production duties have surfaced and it looks like the next record will be a band produced effort. Nothing has been decided regarding who's taking care of the mix either so we'll have to keep you wondering.
Opeth and their management have spent the last month meeting the 5 top label candidates for the next Opeth recording contract. The names are still secret but a decision will be made very soon and obviously announced here earlier than anywhere else.
Several Summer festival appearances have been confirmed and will be posted here soon. A Summer tour of the US has also been confirmed and will be posted here soon as well. The matters are still very "hush, hush" so we can't say anything more at this point. What can be said is that the band will make a few low-profile apperances prior to the next release and several full blown headline tours all over the world after the release. Take your rest now!"
OPETH frontman Mikael Åkerfeldt recently spoke to Australia's HailMetal.com about the group's current search for a new label home and the band's songwriting process, among other topics. A couple of excerpts from the interview follow:
HailMetal.com: Recently your label Music for Nations closed down, leaving OPETH stranded. How has the search for a new label been, and any ideas who are the most likely contenders to sign with?
Mikael Åkerfeldt: "We've gotten a wide array of offers, everything from big labels to labels who want us to pay $200 to appear on some obscure compilation tape.
"To be honest, I don't care who we sign to as long as they can do the job right. I concentrate on the music while our management is taking care of the business.
"Right now I think we've gotten 12 serious offers that we're looking through."
HailMetal.com: Last year "Damnation" was released, an obvious change of style from more aggressive metal to pure melodious rock. I'm aware that this is something of a one-off, and that is wasn't an overall change of style for the band. With this in mind, what did you expect to achieve from this album, and how has the response been?
Mikael Åkerfeldt: "It's been good overall. I think most metal dudes accepted this album as they knew we're into '60s and '70s psychedelia and so on. I love the album. I think it's one of our best however different it might be. 'Damnation' has outsold the previous record and I think the reason being that we've reached out to people who are into rock and psychedelia, like PINK FLOYD or whatever. Many people say to me that they've never been into metal, but they love 'Damnation' and got into OPETH through that album. We're bringing some new people into the metal scene!"
HailMetal.com: The DVD also includes a lengthy documentary on the recordings of your last two albums, "Deliverance" and "Damnation". It seems that your producer Steven Wilson played a strong part in those recording sessions, in both creation and production. Will he be contributing as strongly in the next album, or will his role be downplayed?
Mikael Åkerfeldt: "I don't know. I've asked him to help us out again and he said yes. He's going to produce the next album but we're not sure how it's gonna work. His contribution is very 'heat of the moment' as is the entire recording process for us. If he comes up with an idea, we'll try it. That's basically as far as it goes."
Read Mikael Åkerfeldt's entire interview with HailMetal.com at this location.
OPETH guitarist Peter Lindgren married longtime girlfriend Jessica Svensson on August 21 at Gålögården outside Stockholm, Sweden.
In other news, Peaceville Records reportedly have plans to release a 5.1 surround sound mix re-release of OPETH's fourth album, "Still Life". More information will be made available soon.
Also on the OPETH-related front, OPETH session keyboardist Per Wiberg has laid down his keyboard tracks at Studio Fredman for the new SPIRITUAL BEGGARS album, tentatively due in early 2005. He also recently embarked on a shorter tour of Northern Sweden with legendary blues band SKY HIGH, led by famed guitarist Claes Yngström.
Music for Nations have now officially closed their doors. Opeth have luckily been dropped from BMG/Zomba and is looking through new offers at the moment.
OPETH frontman Mikael Åkerfeldt has started writing material for the group's next album, tentatively scheduled to be recorded sometime in the early spring of 2005. In other news, Åkerfeldt recently visited No Man Studios in Hemel Hampstead, U.K. to lay down some guitars and backing vocals for the next, as-yet-untitled PORCUPINE TREE record. Mikael plays guitar on one track and sings backing vocals on another five songs. The album is due for release late this year. Also on the OPETH-related front, it is likely that OPETH will put out an audio version of the Shepard's Bush (DVD) concert. If this becomes a reality, there will be some "fantastic and super-exclusive extra features," according to a posting on the band's web site. With regards to their label situation, the band write, "Music For Nations is likely to close their doors within a near future, leaving their roster in the hands of BMG. What will happen to the bands is so far unknown, but it's possible that OPETH will be without a record contract in the near future. This is an effect of the massive merge between Zomba Records and BMG."
OPETH main songwriter and guitarist Mikael Åkerfeldt recently spoke to MetalReview.com about the drummer Martin Lopez's anxiety attacks, which caused him to miss a few dates on the band's recent North American tour.
"We had to cancel a few shows and we feel very bad about that so we decided we were going to be very open with it," Mikael said. "[Martin] basically suffered panic attacks and anxiety attacks and severe depression from working too hard and touring so much. It got to the point where he called me up the day before the first scheduled Jordan gig saying that he couldn't go and he was just a wreck. So we took some rest before this gig and then the same thing happened when we went to Frankfurt where we had a connecting flight to Canada and he said he couldn't go, he had to go home and we had to support him with that. He went back home, we missed 3 gigs. Well, he missed them, we did the gigs anyway with our drum tech and Gene Hoglan [STRAPPING YOUNG LAD, DARK ANGEL]. He went to a psychologist and they did tests on him and it's actually some stuff in his blood that makes his heart beat faster and that's the reason why he's been depressed. Now he's getting medication and I think the biggest breakthrough for him was knowing what it was because he was literally going insane. And he was seriously thinking that maybe he'd have to leave the band and he was scared that we would fire him. But from Seattle, which was the first gig on this tour, he was back and I think he's happier now because he knows we've been doing this for such a long time and it's like a rejuvenation for him in a way to be back."
Mikael also commented on the recent online controversy surrounding DEVILDRIVER's addition to the OPETH North American tour over KATAKLYSM, who many people — including KATAKLYSM themselves — thought were a far better fit. "I like them," he said of DEVILDRIVER. "I've never heard them before, but like everybody I kind of had my mind made up about them before, but they were nothing like that. They're more of, I would say, a death metal band, and all the shit they're getting I think is pretty much uncalled for. People just slag them off because of Dez Fafara's past in COAL CHAMBER, and it's a shame and it's hard for them. At some gigs people are like 'Fuck Off' and 'You Guys Suck', and regardless if you don't like a band you just don't do that stuff at shows. I think they're great people and a tight, brutal band. KATAKLYSM, that thing I never got the offer for them to tour with us so I didn't know. All of sudden there are fights and stuff but I didn't know they were supposed to tour with us."
BLOODBATH, the band featuring Mikael Åkerfeldt (OPETH), Anders "Blakkheim" Nyström and Jonas Renkse from KATATONIA, Dan Swanö (Nightingale, EDGE OF SANITY) have issued the following message through the Forum section of their official website:
First of all, hope you're pleased with a new and individual forum for Bloodbath. It was the right time to make one 'cuz the band is BAKK!!!
Yeah, we're currently fueling up for another lap in the death metal lane as the band has now begun writing the material for the follow-up to Resurrection Through Carnage with the studio being booked for late spring.
Now, there has been some relevant changes in the line-up. Vocalist Mike Åkerfeldt has been kicked out and a replacement is already found in one of the biggest names in the scene. Furthermore, drummer Dan Swanö has decided to step off at the death metal depot to switch instruments and is now sharing guitar duties with me. Taking over the drums, is yet another big big name. Jonas Renkse is still keepin the decay and pulse behind the bass and is leading the race of gathering pile after pile with sick and dark lyrics.
As for the new members, their secret names will be revealed soon. A monster album is promised!!!”
The 2004 edition of the Sweden Rock Festival is set to take place June 10th - 12th in Solvesborg, Sweden.
The latest act to be added to the bill is former SAMSON vocalist Nicky Moore who will be playing a set of Samson material as a tribute to late Samson guitarist Paul Samson, who passed away at his Norfolk, England home on August 9, 2002 following a lengthy battle with cancer. Nicky's performance at Sweden Rock will take place on Saturday, June 12th. Nicky will be backed up on stage by Swedish band Locomotive Breath, featuring guitarist Janne Stark (ex-OVERDRIVE). This show will be exclusive for Sweden Rock Festival.
The list of confirmed bands for Sweden Rock 2004 is as follows: More...
A contest to win a copy of Opeth's DVD Lamentations is now up at thedarkesthours.com. All you have to do is click "contests" then "current contests" and fill out the questionaire. One entry per person. Contest ends March 7th
*Psst- Knowing the city of Toronto, Canada may help you out...
In other news, Opeth will be playing both heavy and soft songs on their upcoming tour of Australia in March. Here are all of their Australian dates:
March 23- Adelaide @ Heaven (All ages)
March 24- Sydney @ Enmore Theatre (All ages)
March 25- Brisbane @ The Arena (18+)
March 26- Melbourne @ The Corner (18+)
March 27- Melbourne @ The Corner (18+)
March 28- Melbourne @ The Corner (U18 afternoon matinee show)
Having grown up on a diet of classic and death metal, Opeth leaned toward the darker side initially, although repeated listens to prog rock led to a combination of the two. "It took us a couple of years to find a musical identity," guitarist Peter Lindgren tells Omar Perez of Orlando Weekly. "Prog rock taught us that a song can be 15 minutes long and doesn't have to have a classical structure, and that it can be an adventure."
Read the full article at Orlando Weekly.
DevilDriver closed out the year after landing at #1 on CMJ's Loud Rock Chart and traversing the U.S. twice with Superjoint Ritual. The band are soon kicking off a tour with Opeth and Moonspell starting on January 20th.
The latest DEVILDRIVER, MOONSPELL AND OPETH tour dates are as follows: More...
OPETH have announced that for the third year running they have been nominated for a Swedish Grammy in the category Best Rock/Metal Act Of The Year. Last year they won the award for their 6th album "Deliverance". This year the band’s "Damnation" album is nominated. The nominees in this category are, apart from Opeth, Backyard Babies, Evergrey, The Haunted and Mustasch.
Currently on tour in the U.S. with DEVILDRIVER and MOONSPELL, the guys have just confirmed a show in Amman, Jordan on March 12th. The venue is still TBA.
As previously reported, the band recently announced the North American release date for their first official DVD- "Lamentations - Live At Shepherd's Bush Empire 2003". The disc will be available in North America on February 24th through Koch Entertainment. The DVD has already been released in the UK and Europe through Music For Nations. It contains a one hour documentary, as well as approximately two hours of Opeth live in Stereo, 5.1 and DTS.
The tracklisting: More...