Opeth’s Mikael Åkerfeldt Says New Album Is “More Hard Rock And Metal Sounding”


Opeth vocalist/guitarist Mikael Åkerfeldt has spoken further on the bands new album, which is tentatively expected out in June. When asked by if the new outing was a continuation of the vibe found on their last release “Heritage“, he replied:

“Yeah, to a certain extent. I mean, it’s the next album so I guess it’s closer to that album than say the first album. But I’d like to think there’s an upgraded sound, and by that I don’t mean a modern sound.

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We were looking at some of the late 70s and early 80s production, and that’s what we were going for sound-wise and it’s one of the reasons why we ended up recording at Rockfield Studios in Wales which is a legendary studio where many of our favorite bands recorded.

So musically I guess you could say it’s similar to Heritage but I’d like to think it’s more hard rock and metal sounding. We also have something new that we didn’t have before in certain songs. I don’t really know what it is, which I like. I like to either recognize our sound or to hear something completely new, and I think we have both on the new album.”

When asked if fans of “Heritage” would quickly take to this album as a result, he offered:

“Yeah, I hope so. I hope everybody will like it, of course. I think it’s probably a bit easier to get into because it’s a bit more melodic. There’s definitely more attention to melodies and I wouldn’t say it’s an easy-listening album at all, but there’s more melody than ever before, not just ‘Heritage‘. I’m hoping that people who liked ‘Heritage‘ will like this one too and also fans who liked the old shit will hopefully like this one as well, and may be some new fans. You never know!”

He was also asked if he was at peace with the divisive response albums like “Heritage” have received from the bands fans:

“Yeah, that’s always been the case. It wasn’t something that happened exclusively for ‘Heritage‘. We got that reaction from old albums too when they came out, like ‘Blackwater Park‘. A lot of people didn’t like that album, and it was the same for ‘Ghost Reveries‘ and some of the other albums we’ve done in the past that are now considered to be some of our best stuff.

They got negative feedback when they were released. I think ‘Heritage‘ probably took longer to settle in with our fan base because of the fact that it was a different-sounding record for us, but I think it’s settled in now. People have warmed up to it with time. I mean, there are still people who hate it of course, but I think there are people who initially hated it who now love it.”

For more from Åkerfeldt, check out the full feature at

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