Opeth Frontman on New Album: 'It's Time for 'All In' With Strings'

"Hopefully it won't be a mess," adds Mikael Akerfeldt.

Ultimate Guitar

Opeth frontman Mikael Akerfeldt gave an update regarding the songwriting process of the band's upcoming studio record, announcing more of a "pretentious" approach. Chatting with Decibel magazine, the singer/guitarist said (via Blabbermouth): "I have about six songs done and another two or three just started, plus a million ideas that I haven't processed yet. Some songs are simple and stripped-down, while others are epic in the true sense of the word. Business as usual, hopefully with unusual music." Further elaborating the new material's sonic aspects, Mikael focused on the synths, dubbing them critical on the upcoming effort. "Some of these things could easily be done with synthetic sounds or effects," he said, "but recording the 'Storm Corrosion' LP with Steven Wilson made me realize what a massive difference it can mean to incorporate the real sh-t. "I'm semi-pretentious in my songwriting and sometimes I go all in," Akerfeldt added. "I think it's time for 'all in' with strings and the full monty. Hopefully it won't be a mess." During the rest of the chat, Mikael wasn't afraid to admit a "Goblin ripoff" on one of the fresh tracks, naming Italian '70s prog rockers as a major influence. "It's a jam I came up with during the Mastodon / Ghost tour that we ended up soundchecking," the frontman explained. "After a few days, you'd hear people in the corridors humming it. It's a f--king hit! But basically it's a not-so-subtle headbanging-type nod in Goblin's direction. And to avoid confusion, the song is even called 'Goblin.' My rip-off deteriorates mid-song and becomes fusion-esque darkened prog rock like Mahavishnu or ELP (yikes!). But it swings! It really does," Akerfeldt concluded. The latest Opeth studio effort, "Heritage," saw its release in September 2011 through Roadrunner Records.

19 comments sorted by best / new / date

    Ahhhh you swedish bastard! Now I'm so ****ing excited for this that I gotta go dump a load in my old lady.
    I read baby.. I was like 'WTF?????'
    This is exciting news. Say what you will about Heritage, I thought it was a killer album that showed some great versatility. Looking forward to another curveball!
    You go ahead and stay pretentious about your songwriting, Mikael, because you're doing something right and people with working ears love it.
    I think most people are going to hate their new album..... Using the words “Steven Wilson”, “Strings”, “Full monty”, “Mess” If you loathed Heritage you’ve probably already made up your mind about the next effort after seeing him use those words.
    That motherf***er looks exactly like a blonde Jared Leto. I honestly thought it was him dressed up all metal-like.