While at the UK's inaugural High Voltage Festival earlier this summer, AltSounds.com sat down with Opeth keyboardist Per Wilberg to talk about the monumental year the band has had. Having just celebrated their 20th anniversary with a mini world tour where they played Blackwater Park in its entirety, now releasing a commerative DVD of the London date on that trek and performing at this summer's Bloodstock, the band has a lot to talk about.
Read an excerpt of the interview below and go right here for the full feature.
Opeth In Live Concert at the Royal Albert Hall is out September 21st. Pre-order the Limited Edition DVD/Vinyl Box Set at this location now while supplies last! To view other pre-order options, including the 5-disc special edition, check out Opeth's page right here.
Altsounds: 2010 has already been a great year for you with the release of the Legacy edition of Blackwater Park and the evolution XX shows. You must be really happy right now?
Per: Yeah, compared to the recent couple of years this year has been pretty calm. The tour we did for the anniversary shows was only 10 dates and we’re only doing 5 festivals over the summer so its kind of a holiday for Opeth (laughs)
Altsounds: You guys have been around for 20 years yourselves now, How do you feel about being considered a legendary act in your own right?
Per: Legendary is maybe a bit too much. Call us a band that’s been around for 20 years (laughs) I don’t know, I think there’s a few bands from our generation who have been around for a long time and I guess people enjoy continuity because, it means everyone is enjoying what they are doing if they do it for a long time. Music is everything to everyone in this band so I hope that has something to do with it. You can only write and play the music you do, you can never count on people coming to the shows and buying the albums.
Altsounds: How was playing The Royal Albert Hall?
Per: It was different but very cool, also a classic venue as well. We’ve seen loads of live DVDs filmed there and the venue showcased on Swedish TV so its kind of mindblowing to walk into that venue during the day when none of the audience were there, but then it’s a busy day so you forget it and get into the groove.
Altsounds: The Evolution XX shows you did worldwide to celebrate the anniversary of the band and release of Blackwater Park were a special treat for the fans. How did the idea for those shows come about?
Per: Firstly Mikael said last year ‘We turn 20 years next year’ what should we do? Maybe we could go to a pub in Stockholm somewhere and bring some gear and if any of our friends wanna play a song or two they can and we’ll drink beer (Laughs) and it escalated from there to lets do a show at Royal Albert Hall; and then it was well lets do more shows in LA and New York if we can fit them in as well. When we had the Royal Albert Hall date confirmed we booked the rest.
Altsounds: Are there any plans for a new Opeth album at this stage?
Per: There are plans for a new album, I don’t have any dates or deadlines right now, it will be done when its done. I know Mikael has written some stuff but I don’t know how much, I don’t think he even knows either because he just writes stuff, then we listen to it and sort things out, its very fragmentary right now but of course there is going to be a new album.