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Band Photo: Opeth (?)

Formed: 1990
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.

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Opeth Posts 2013 Trailer

Swedish progressive metal favourites Opeth have posted a new, thirty second trailer online for their upcoming 2013 activity, which will commence in the Spring of next year. You can check it out below. More...

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Opeth Talks Gear In Video Interview

Front man Mikael Åkerfeldt and guitarist Fredrik Åkesson of Opeth were interviewed by Marshall on the first date of the band's recent U.K. tour. They talk about the amps they use onstage, and walk you through their live rigs. Check out the clip below.

The band has recently been performing unplugged shows featuring acoustic rendition of earlier works, in addition to softer songs off the new album "Heritage." You can check out excerpts from a recent interview with Mikael Åkerfeldt about these unplugged gigs right here.

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Opeth Discusses Unplugged Shows

Legendary Swedish act Opeth performed an unplugged show in London earlier this month, with footage from the show available here. Roadrunner Records has now conducted an interview directly with band frontman Mikael Akerfeldt about the show and footage being recorded from several unplugged gigs which may be released down the line. Excerpts from the interview follow, or you can read the full thing right here.

RR: You played what was described as your first-ever “unplugged” show earlier this month at Union Chapel in London, but you were playing electric instruments, so how was it different from a regular Opeth gig?

Well, none of the so-called “unplugged” shows are really unplugged, because there’s always microphones [laughs], even if you’ve got acoustic guitars. But we just played some more mellow stuff, I guess. We’ve got a bunch of those songs, so it was kind of easy for us to do that. The problem we had was that the dB limit in Union Chapel, where we played, was 85 dB, so we had to have the amps on really low. That was the only problem that we noticed, really. Other than that, it was fun. It was a bit like throwing ourselves off a cliff in a way, because out of the 10 or 11 songs that we played, I think half of them were songs we’d never played before. So it was interesting. But it went really well. I was quite happy with it.

RR: You're doing two more shows like this, in Germany; are you filming or recording these shows at all?

We bought some type of rig, so we can record every show. I’m not sure if we’re recording every show, but we did record the London show, and we’re probably gonna continue recording whenever we can. But I’m not sure what we’re doing with that stuff, to be honest. It’s always good to have material, and maybe further down the line, if we have a bunch of shows recorded we can pick and choose the best segments of the shows and maybe put something out, but we don’t know yet.
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Opeth Plays Unplugged Show, Footage Available

Opeth performed an unplugged show at the Union Chapel in London on November 16th, 2012 and fan-filmed footage from the show is now available online.

Below you can check out Opeth playing "Häxprocess" and an unplugged version of "Demon of the Fall" courtesy of YouTube users ryanjoe2003 and wilsonmikael. "Häxprocess" comes off the band's latest full-length album "Heritage" (reviewed here). More...

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Anders Nystrom Talks Bloodbath, Canned Opeth Tour

MetalInsider.net had the chance to interview guitarist Anders Nystrom (Katatonia, Bloodbath) in New York City last weekend, and during the chat Anders revealed that Katatonia’s originally planned fall tour with Opeth has been canned, and also confirmed that Bloodbath has found a replacement for Mikael Akerfeldt in Bloodbath. Excerpts from the interview follow.

Metal Insider: Speaking about touring, guitarist Fredrik Akesson let it slip this past summer that Opeth and Katatonia would be touring North America again later this year. Is that still happening?

That was supposed to happen, but Mikael [Akerfeldt, Opeth frontman] actually pulled the plug on that at the last minute. It’s very unfortunate because we have two more days on this tour now. In three days, we were supposed to start that tour, so it’s a bummer really. We were ready to do that.

Metal Insider: Did he give a reason for canning the tour?

I think honestly, Mikael’s burnt. He’s just been touring nonstop, constantly. I think he had to choose his priorities because they’re going out in Europe in a month as well. So that would mean they probably wouldn’t have a gap at all and they decided to pull on this tour, which is unfortunate for us. But things like that happen, it’s out of our control.

Metal Insider On the plus side, at least you guys did get to tour together. It brought a lot of exposure for the band, I’m sure. I remember when we were speaking you were like, “that would be the perfect tour for us” and one year later… More...

Read the full article at Metal Insider.

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Opeth Discusses Acoustic Show

In an exclusive video for Prograckmag.com, Opeth mainman Mikael Akerfeldt explains where the idea of doing an acoustic show came from, why it appealed to him, and why he chose Anathema to support his band on an upcoming UK tour. Check out the video right here or in the player below.

Prog Magazine No.30 is published on September 26th and features Akerfeldt on the cover. The Opeth November UK tour dates are as follows:

12/11 Nottingham Rock City
13/11 Glasgow O2 ABC
14/11 Dublin Vicar St
15/11 Leeds Metropolitan University
16/11 London Union Chapel
17/11 Portsmouth Pyramid Centre More...

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Metal Evolution: "Extreme Metal" in Works

Due to an overwhelming demand from metal fans worldwide, Grammy-nominated and Juno award-winning Banger Films is setting out to raise funds to make what has become known as "The Lost Episode" a reality. Metal Evolution: Extreme Metal “The Lost Episode” covers co-director Sam Dunn’s favorite genres: Death Metal, Black Metal and Grindcore, and he is reaching out to metal fans to help make it happen.

“Hundreds of fans have emailed us demanding, pleading, that we do this episode,” says Banger Films co-founder Sam Dunn. “So in response we're launching an IndieGoGo campaign to raise funding within the Metal community to finance the episode. The goal is to raise $175,000 in 90 days!” The campaign kicked off Friday, September 14th. Details of the campaign, including cool donor gifts at various contribution levels. More...

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Trivium Posts Acoustic Opeth Cover

Trivium's Matt Heafy held a special acoustic concert at the Moscot store in New York City on August 13th, 2012 to help raise awareness for the Moscot MobilEyes Foundation which provides free medical eye care and eyewear. During the concert, which was covered by Metal Injection, Heafy performed an acoustic cover of Opeth's "Harvest," taken from the "Blackwater Park" album. Check out the footage below or over at Metal Injection. More...

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Opeth To Write New Album

Opeth frontman Mikael Åkerfeldt was interviewed by PitCam.tv at this year's Wacken Open Air festival in Germany, and you can check out the whole conversation in the player below. In the clip, Mikael talks about previous experiences playing Wacken and other festivals, how membership changes have impacted the band's growth, starting to write new material, and playing the band's death metal songs at the festival.

Opeth's new album "Heritage (reviewed here) is available now. Metalunderground.com recently took two opposing sides to dissect the album, which features no death growls or extreme metal elements. Check out our pro-"Heritage" and anti-"Heritage" articles.

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Opeth Posts Scandinavian Tour Dates

Opeth has announced another series of Scandinavian tour dates after wrapping up the band's shows with Anathema. Support for Opeth comes in the way of the Finnish metal rockers the Von Hertzen Brothers, who will open at every show with the exception of the performance in Örebro on December 1.

Dates are as follows:

26.11 - Vox Hall, Århus - DK
27.11 - Vega, Copenhagen - DK
29.11 - KB, Malmö - SE
30.11 - Katalin, Uppsala - SE
01.12 - Club 700, Örebro - SE
02.12 - Nefertiti, Göteborg - SE*
03.12 - Nefertiti, Göteborg - SE*
04.12 - Södra Theater, Stockholm - SE*
05.12 - Södra Theater, Stockholm - SE*
06.12 - Maxim, Gävle - SE
07.12 - Skandiateatern, Norrköping - SE

Denotes Unplugged show *

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"And Justice For Art" Series Debuts

"...And Justice For Art" premiered today, July 11th, 2012 on www.PureGrainAudio.com and a new episode in the series is scheduled to be released weekly. The articles include in-depth research and exclusive interviews with musicians, designers and industry insiders about landmark cover artworks albums such as Death's 'Symbolic', Sigh's 'In Somniphobia', Cormorant's 'Dwellings', Slayer's 'Reign in Blood', Opeth "Heritage" and many more. To view the first article visit this location today. Check out the video teaser for the series below.

"...And Justice For Art" is the result of the tireless efforts from the series' mastermind and frequent PureGrain writer Ramon Martos-Garcia, who is also known in the underground scene for his involvement with Third World Metal bands like Archaios, Divinis Invocat and the indie record label Dark Canvas Records. "In the past, there have been many attempts to tell stories about this subject ", says Ramon, "but never with this level of hindsight and detail. I think what will make this series different is that we are telling stories from different points of view and exploring these cover artworks from a human, psychological, artistic and historical perspective. I truly believe this will be something very unique and special and that everyone reading these articles will be learning and discovering new things about Contemporary Arts and Metal."

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Mikael Akerfeldt Working With Genesis Guitarist

Sweden's Opeth has issued the following announcement about front man Mikael Akerfeldt recording a new collaboration with Steve Hackett of Genesis:

"Mikael has recorded some vocals in collaboration with legendary Genesis guitarist Steve Hackett. Mikael is featured on a re-recording of the classic mega-epos 'Supper's ready' from 1972's 'Foxtrot' album. Watch this space for further details about the upcoming release.

"Due to popular demand Mikael has recorded 8 further shows for Swedish national radio. 'De bortglömda mästerverken' (The forgotten masterpieces) is a series of shows where Mikael flips vinyl on air, playing mostly obscure progressive and psychedelic rock.

"The show is being produced by Andreas Matz for Radio P4 and will start airing on the 15th of July. You can also catch it online at this location."

In other recent coverage of Opeth, the band was looked at for our Sunday Old School column, and we also featured opposing and supporting opinion articles on the band's change in style with latest album "Heritage."

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Anathema Announces Shows With Opeth

Anathema has issued the following announcement about adding on more tour dates, including shows supporting Sweden's Opeth:

"As promised, we're now able to announce the big news! Not only have we added a further 11 shows to our European tour but we are also confirmed as special guests to the mighty OPETH on a selection of their UK and European shows in November!

"This tour also includes three very special unplugged shows including London's Union Chapel. Tickets for the new tour dates and Opeth shows are on sale from 15th June."

Anathema is touring in support of the band's new album "Weather System" (reviewed here), while Opeth is performing in support of latest album "Heritage" (reviewed here). More...

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Column

Sunday Old School: Opeth

This past week, MetalUnderground.com has largely (and irritably for some,) been discussing the latest Opeth album, "Heritage," which has divided fans with its blend of seventies inspired prog rock. To understand why some fans are so upset about the direction, perhaps it would be best to take a look at the history of the group. Opeth was formed in 1990 in the Swedish capital by vocalist David Isbgerg and guitarist Mikael Åkerfeldt after an argument with former band mates of Isbergs. They soon recruited bass player Nick Döring, drummer Anders Nordin and a second guitarist named Andreas Dimeo, though Dimeo and Döring left the group after their first performance. A number of lineup changes would follow, most notably the inclusion of guitarist Peter Lindgren (who originally joined as a bass player) and the departure of Isberg, with Åkerfeldt taking over vocal duties, in addition to keeping his role as a guitar player. They soon earned themselves a record deal with the then newly formed Candlelight Records and recorded their debut album, "Orchid" in the Spring of 1994, though due to distribution problems, it wouldn’t see a release until the next year. The album was positively received, with critics praising their blend of death metal with acoustic guitars and harmonies.

They soon followed "Orchid" with their sophomore effort, "Morningrise," which garnered even higher praise than "Orchid," allowing them to embark on a tour of the United Kingdom and a large Scandinavian trek with Cradle Of Filth. The growing interest in the band led them to sign with German label, Century Media, who released the groups first two albums in the United States (they had previously only been available in Europe.) Soon after the signing however, the band first parted with bassist Johan DeFarfalla, before splitting with Nordin, leaving Mikael Åkerfeldt as the sole original member. The first band first hired a new drummer named Martin Lopez before recording their third album, "My Arms, Your Hearse," which featured Åkerfeldt performing bass duties, though they soon found a permanent bassist in Martín Méndez. "My Arms, Your Hearse" continued Opeths tradition of releasing albums that were more acclaimed than their last, with many ranking it among their finest albums. More...

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OpEd

Opeth Remains Dark and Somber on "Heritage"

Update: For the opposing view of this Op/Ed, head over to this location.

“Heritage” is the slowest album in Opeth’s discography, but that doesn’t make it a bad album. Opeth has never made a bad album, and every Opeth album contains slow parts. This time the group just decided to make that the focus of the recording. I’m not turned off by a band playing slowly. In fact, some of my favorite artists are known for playing slowly. These bands carry the “doom metal” modifier. While nobody with the knowledge of descriptive metal tags would categorize Opeth as a doom artist, they take a similar approach, especially mood-wise, to their music. More...

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OpEd

Opeth Loses Its True "Heritage"

Our “Sunday Old School” column covering the legendary Swedish progressive death metal act Opeth is just on the horizon, and we’ve decided to take this opportunity to look more in-depth at the band’s latest album “Heritage,” which has divided the fanbase.

While I personally find the album disappointing, other members of the MetalUnderground.com staff hold differing opinions. If you don’t fancy my take on the album, Rex_84’s opposing look at “Heritage” may be more to your tastes.

Before the album was released I made of point to avoid listening to any advance tracks, wanting to hear the upcoming masterpiece in its entirety with no preconceived notions of what I was going to be experiencing. Although I gave it a 3.5 out of 5 in the final review, I have to confess my opinion of the album lessens every time I listen to it. With the exception of “The Devil’s Orchard,” I’m at a point where I almost hate this album.

I should reveal up front that I’m one of those people that would easily get labeled an Opeth fanboy on any given Internet discussion. If you’ve ever complained about how fans of the Swedish outfit are “pretentious” or “snobby,” you were probably talking about me. My CD case isn’t arranged alphabetically or even by genre – it’s arranged in order of bands I listen to most frequently to bands I listen to least often. “Orchid” through “Watershed” occupy the first nine spots in that case.

The first time I ever heard Opeth was on my 14th birthday, and it’s a tale I enjoy sharing whenever metal stories come up in conversation. Being raised in a very Christian home, under no circumstances was I ever to be listening to something with loud guitars and indiscernible vocals. Jars of Clay and Rebecca St. James were the order of the day, and Audio Adrenaline was the heaviest thing going on. With my family gathered around for the birthday bash, my older brother passed me a computer game as a gift, and this was back when PC software came in those ridiculously oversized boxes. Peaking inside the box, I see a copy of “My Arms, Your Hearse” had been covertly placed underneath the game manual, safely out of parental view.

My exposure to so-called “real” metal was actually fairly limited at that point. Sure, I’d heard Metallica and whatnot on MTV, but as far as actual honest-to-Lucifer extreme metal, my experiences were essentially limited to a Destiny’s End album and one Samael EP, so I had no idea what to expect when popping that CD into the player. I certainly didn’t think the album would be starting with the sounds of rain and piano notes before the metal hit, and then suddenly my world exploded. That shit on the radio everyone was listening to? That wasn’t music anymore. THIS was music.

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Opeth Frontman Injured On Tour Bus

After rumors have circulated of Mikael Akerfeldt being in a car accident, the Opeth front man has now issued the following statement about being injured:

"Hi guys! I'm writing from beyond the grave. Seriously, I was not in a car crash and I haven't broken my arm. All that happened is I hit my head in mastodons tour bus as I was getting a new pair of (red) underwear out from my suitcase. Wish the story was more rock and roll, believe me.

"Anyways I split my head open down to the skullbone and had to be taken to the emergency. They gave me a bunch of shots in the wound, cleaned me up and stapled my head shut with 8 metal staples. Head is sore and if I smile it feels like the wound is gonna burst open again, but I'll be on stage by tomorrow again.

"I feel extremely disappointed that we couldn't play at the myth in Minneapolis, but paramedics told me I couldn't. We will reschedule the show for our next trip to the USA. So all rumors of me being in a car crash are false. I did crash my head into a car though, well...a bus really. Sorry for disappointing our fans in Minneapolis but I hope you understand. See you next time. Best."

A photo of the wound in question has been posted online via Facebook. In other news, Mikael Akerfeldt will soon be releasing the "Storm Corrosion" project with Porcupine Tree's Steven Wilson.

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Mikael Akerfeldt Talks Storm Corrosion Project

Roadrunner Records has posted a new video clip online with Mikael Akerfeldt of Opeth discussing the Storm Corrosion project, covering such aspects as songwriting, production, whether the tracks will ever be played live, and more.

Check out the clip below. You can also find a previously posted video with Akerfeldt and Porcupine Tree's Steven Wilson, the other half of Storm Corrosion, at this location.

"Storm Corrosion" is due out May 8th via Roadrunner Records and the track listing is as follows:

1. Drag Ropes 9:52
2. Storm Corrosion 10:12
3. Hag 6:28
4. Happy 4:53
5. Lock Howl 6:09
6. Ljudet Innan 10:20

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Opeth's Martin Mendez Talks New Album "Heritage"

Matt Bishop interviewed Martin Mendez of Opeth in Philadelphia, and video from the chat can be viewed below. Roadrunner Records also commented on the interview:

"Opeth bassist Martin Mendez was interviewed backstage in Philadelphia, when the band played the Electric Factory on their current tour with Mastodon and Ghost. In the clip, he discusses how the writing for the band's latest album, Heritage, began and then started over again; mixing old songs and new in the live set; and much more. Martin rarely gives interviews, so enjoy!"

You can also find our recent interview with Opeth drummer Martin Axenrot over at this location.

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Report

Opeth Prolongs “Heritage” in San Antonio

Opeth returned to central Texas for the second time since releasing “Heritage” in the fall of 2011. Prog/tech masters Mastodon and mysterious, occult metallers Ghost supported the Swedish troupe. This performance at San Antonio’s Backstage Live marked my first Opeth concert in nine years. The group has undergone many changes since then—changes of style, personnel and label—but coming into this show I had an overwhelming since of continuation, perhaps a sequel.

“Heritage” is the first Opeth album since “Damnation” comprised entirely of clean vocals. It’s still a heavy album, as was “Damnation,” but without Mikael Åkerfeldt’s bestial roar, Opeth doesn’t climb as high into the emotional stratosphere. Their showcasing of this material led to a performance focused more on melody than ferocity. Some of the buzz around the Internet gave the impression that the band were to play a snoozer. One person even likened their performance to a Lionel Richie show. A similar backlash occurred at the 2003 show with Porcupine Tree. Opeth played the entire “Damnation” album that night and didn’t include a single growled note.

In a Metal Underground interview before the show, drummer Martin Axenrot said the evening would contain some death metal, so it wasn’t quite the prog-only exhibition of 2003. It was a fairly chilled out evening, though. Although Mastodon only occasionally accosted the crowd with hard rock fury, guitar and vocal harmonies induced swaying sing a-longs rather than pits and head banging from the crowd. More...

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