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Opeth: Mikael Åkerfeldt Masterclass

May 31st, 2008

In this Masterclass, progressive death metal legend Mikael Åkerfeldt discusses and demonstrates several songs from Opeth’s Watershed as well as Still Life, the album that grabbed the attention of producer Steven Wilson of Porcupine Tree. His collaboration with the band produced their next three albums, including the melancholy Damnation – represented here by ‘Hope Leaves’ and ‘Ending Credits.’

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Some chords commonly used by Opeth:

Chords commonly used by Opeth

The Lotus Eater


Opeth - The Lotus Eater


Opeth - The Lotus Eater

© ‘The Lotus Eater’ written by Mikael Åkerfeldt

  • Mike

    What is Opeth’s tuning?

    • Ivan Chopik

      Almost always Standard Tuning. Occasionally Drop-D. Other than that, the Ghost Reveries album was almost all in Open Dm Tuning .

  • joshua

    damn dude.. that would be so awesome to jam with michael.. your so lucky!

  • Oscar

    What scale´s Opeth use in solos????

    • Chris Dingman

      Mikael uses natural minor (1-2-b3-4-5-b6-b7) a lot, and throws in the b5 for bluesy effect. He also does a number of runs from scale degree 4 down to 2, as in the final lick of the Baying Of The Hounds solo.

      • Ivan Chopik

        More recently, they also started including more diminished sounds (though more often arpeggios, rather than scales), as well as harmonic minor scales (1-2-b3-4-5-b6-7)

  • Sergei_From_Chile

    Terrific clean sound!!! Wish amp are you using guys?

    • Ivan Chopik

      Thanks! We provided Mikael with a battery-powered Vox AD-5. Great amp!

      • Sergei_From_Chile


        What a killer tone from such a small amp!

        Regards from Chile!

  • Eduardo from Mexico

    impressive, you jammed with Mikael Akerfeldt. Is he as kind as he looks?

    • Stelios

      He (and fredrik and axe, which i ‘ve met alongside mikael) is a tremendously kind, polite, friendly, and genius person. Haven’t jammed with him but have shook his hand and talked to him for 5 mins or so and he was astonishingly friendly :)

  • Pingback: Guitar Messenger – OPETH Premiere First Track From New Album HERITAGE: “The Devil’s Orchard”()

  • jesse

    why are there only tab for the lotus eater?

    • Ivan Chopik

      What you see above is all we tabbed for this masterclass. At the time this feature came out, we weren’t doing full transcriptions yet.

      • Nelson

        Can you transcribe face of melinda, and the other videos soon?

        • Ivan Chopik

          We’ve got our hands full with new material at the moment, but I’ll keep this in mind and hopefully we can update some of these older masterclasses, as well!

          • Sergey

            Hi! Please say whati is the song “trouble” about wich Mikael sad when you played an Ending credits ?

  • Sergey

    Hi there once again. What is this song that Mike called “trouble” (If I correct heard) when you learning Ending Credits?

    • Ivan Chopik

      According to Mike, it’s a song by 70’s prog-rock band Camel. I haven’t had luck finding that song, so let me know if you do!

      • Sergey

        Thanks. I try to find this song. And let you know if I’m lucky!!

  • Jull

    What kind of telecaster is that one? thnks :D

    • admin

      I think it’s just an American Standard, but I’m not sure.

  • Nick

    This is a treasure trove of the best Opeth material ever…the watershed was their best album without a doubt. I’m so glad I found this — a lot of the tabs are totally wrong especially for the lotus eater. Must have been so cool playing ending credits with Mike…awesome song.

  • tim123

    hi! what pedal play mikael-akerfeldt?????????????????

    • Ivan Chopik

      Hi! We didn’t use any pedals in this video – just guitar straight into a Vox DA5 amp.

  • Andrew Johnson

    Hey guy’s! Would it be possible to make an tab for Ending Credits and Face of Melinda? Having trouble following what Mikael is playing as the video width is quite small :(