OPETH – The Roundhouse Tapes

A good indication that a band has “made it” is if they release a live album and Swedish juggernaut OPETH haven’t resisted following this recording industry tradition. Basing their name on the legendary IRON MAIDEN recording, The Roundhouse Tapes was recorded at The Roundhouse in London on November 9, 2006. The band are in fine form performing their long, intricate songs with ease. Compared to their early days of performing live, OPETH have come a long way in becoming a strong live band. However, frontman Mikael Akerfeldt still doesn’t have much of anything exciting or too stimulating to say in between songs (see Tom Araya). The production by Jens Bogran and Mikael Akerfeldt is top-notch. The sound is pristine with an ideal balance among the instruments. The audience also sounds relatively “close by” the band as you can even hear individual voices out in the crowd at times. As far as song selection goes, the band satisfy the cravings of diehards as they play songs spanning their entire catalogue. The Roundhouse Tapes is basically an essential part of every OPETH fan’s collection as they are probably very few casual or non-rabid OPETH fans out there. It can also be said that there are probably not many fans of underground extreme metal who don’t enjoy this band. (Peaceville Records)

OPETH Deliver Sneak Peek of The Roundhouse Tapes Live Recording

OPETH‘s forthcoming release, The Roundhouse Tapes, is a 2 CD set containing the band’s live performance from Camden Roundhouse in London where they played last November 9th. The band have launched a microsite previewing material from the upcoming release: http://www.peaceville.com/opeth/

The site features info, downloads, samples of tracks from the album and also and mp3 download offer of the track, “Bleak,” taken from The Roundhouse Tapes.

Frontman Mikael Akerfeldt commented on the project: “The Roundhouse concert…caught the band at the peak of the Ghost Reveries tour. We’ve decided to collaborate with one of our past labels for this release, the legendary Peaceville Records to preserve this pleasurable memory for todays music lovers as well as for generations to come.”

The album is set to drop on November 20th through Peaceville Records.

OPETH to Release First Live Album on November 20th

The Roundhouse Tapes contains a captivating OPETH performance from the Camden Roundhouse, London, UK, on November 9th, 2006 (a gig which also featured Goth metal legends PARADISE LOST), and sees the band in scintillating form churning out a selection of classics from their illustrious career. You know what to expect from OPETH: unrivalled composition; seamless progressive dynamics and boundless atmosphere from the mellow to the incredibly heavy, all sealed with the unmistakable vocal presence of mainman Mikael Ã…kerfeldt.

Mikael Ã…kerfeldt had the follow thoughts:

“The Roundhouse concert will always be a very memorable gig for us for many reasons, but most importantly it caught the band at the peak of the Ghost Reveries tour. I must say we’re quite tight after 18 odd months on the road supporting the record. I’m extremely pleased we got it documented and I hope it will please our beloved fans as well. As an extra bonus we’ve decided to collaborate with one of our past labels for this release, the legendary Peaceville Records. Here’s a toast to Hammy and Lisa for helping us back in the day as well as to the new team for preserving this pleasurable memory for today’s music lovers as well as for generations to come.”

The Roundhouse Tapes tracklisting:

“Ghost of Perdition”
Under The Weeping Moon
Face of Melinda
Night and the Stillwater

Blackwater Park
Demon of the Fall

Guitarist Peter Lindgren Quits OPETH; Fredrik Ã…kesson Steps In

Peter Lindgren has stepped down from his guitar-wielding duties in OPETH after 16 years. His official statement on the matter reads as follows:

“It is with sadness I announce that OPETH and I are going separate ways after almost 16 years. The decision has been the toughest I’ve ever made but it is the right one to make at this point in my life.

“The reason behind this is that I feel that I simply have lost some of the enthusiasm and inspiration needed to participate in a band that has grown from a few guys playing the music we love to a worldwide industry. The love of music has always been, and still is, our motive, but I personally have lost something along the way. The massive amount of touring has taken its toll.

OPETH has worked extremely hard to get where we are right now and in order to persist and maintain the quality of the music, it is necessary that we continue to work hard and always stay focused. But in doing so, it means that we nowadays spend 18 or 19 months on the road and I don’t feel the same enthusiasm for the upcoming world tour that I have felt earlier. I have come to a point where I realize I won’t be able to give the band 100%, and from both sides this will not be good enough for what OPETH stands for. I will always love playing, listening to, and living music, but I will do it differently from now on.

“These years has easily been the best of my life and I will always cherish the memory of what we have experienced together.

“I would like to thank the band, our management, record label people, all the bands I’ve made friends with for everything. Most of all, I would like to thank the fans from the depth of my heart for the support throughout the years.

‘I wish Mikael, Martin, Per and Axe all the best and I am confident they will continue doing the greatest music in the world!!”

Fredrik Ã…kesson (ex-ARCH ENEMY, KRUX, TALISMAN) has been confirmed as the new guitarist in OPETH.

Says OPETH leader Mikael Ã…kerfeldt: “Well, I think it’s too soon right now to fully be able to explain what I feel.

Peter and I had been working in this band together for almost half of our lives and we shared some unforgettable experiences together all over the world. We will obviously remain friends and this ‘break-up’ has been on very good terms from both sides. We all wish him the best of luck with his future ventures!

Fredrik was the only name that popped up thinking about a replacement for Peter. In my opinion he’s one of the top three guitar players out of Sweden. We all get along great as we’ve known each other for maybe four years and he already has the experience to take on the circus-like lifestyle we lead as members of OPETH.

“I can’t wait to see what he can bring to the table musically and also to get out on the roads touring together. His first gig will be at the Ilosaarirock festival [July 13-15 in Joensuu] in Finland. I’m sure he’ll shit his pants before that one, but then again…so will I!”