Skip to main content

Opeth’s Akerfeldt on Yngwie Malmsteen: His records have been pretty s*** for a long time

Mikael Akerfeldt and Yngwie Malmsteen (Image credit: Joseph Okpako/WireImage and Scott Legato - Getty)

Opeth (opens in new tab)’s Mikael Akerfeldt has been speaking with Music Radar (opens in new tab) about the guitarists who have inspired his work throughout the years.

While he picks out artist including Ritchie Blackmore, Tony Iommi, Andy Latimer, Jimi Hendrix and Gary Moore, he also mentions Yngwie Malmsteen (opens in new tab), who Akerfeldt admits he has a love/hate relationship with.

Akerfeldt says: “People talk a lot of shit about Yngwie… I talk a lot of shit about Yngwie! I hate him as much as I love him. I just want to shake him around, kick him in the ass and make him wake up to something. He is fantastic and he knows it. He has the most beautiful tone of all heavy metal guitar players, bar Fredrik Akesson.

“I saw his latest video for his blues album, which I thought was appalling, cruising down the Miami streets in his Ferrari. That’s not what I think of when I think of blues. It’s pretty horrible. 

“His records have been pretty fuckin’ shit for a long time, but the guitar playing has always been great. The last one I loved was Odyssey, but now I just sound like a disgruntled Opeth fan. After that, he went a bit cheesy and got really bad.”

Akerfeldt adds: “I feel like he should take care of his career better and maybe calm down a bit, focus on writing great songs. He’s not giving himself the credit he is due, he just wants to carry on playing neoclassical at full distortion. 

“But I still love him – he’s on this list, which is proof enough right?”

Opeth will release their new album In Cauda Venenum on September 27 through Moderbolaget / Nuclear Blast and head back out on tour across the UK and Europe throughout October and November (opens in new tab).

Opeth - In Cauda Venenum

(Image credit: Moderbolaget / Nuclear Blast)

Opeth: In Cauda Venenum 
1. Livet’s Trädgård / Garden Of Earthly Delights (Intro)  
2. Svekets Prins / Dignity  
3. Hjärtat Vet Vad Handen Gör / Heart In Hand  
4. De Närmast Sörjande / Next Of Kin  
5. Minnets Yta / Lovelorn Crime  
6. Charlatan  
7. Ingen Sanning Är Allas / Universal Truth  
8. Banemannen / The Garroter  
9. Kontinuerlig Drift / Continuum  
10. Allting Tar Slut / All Things Will Pass

Scott looks after and updates Louder’s online buyer’s guides and also scouts out the best deals for music fans from every corner of the internet. He's spent more than 28 years in newspapers and magazines as an editor, production editor, sub-editor, designer, writer and reviewer. Scott joined our news desk in the summer of 2014, where he wrote extensively about rock, metal, prog and more, before moving to the eCommerce team full-time in 2020. Scott has previous written for publications including IGN, Sunday Mirror, Daily Record and The Herald covering everything from daily news and weekly features, to video games, travel and whisky.