Opeth vocalist and band mastermind Mikael Åkerfeldt makes it no secret that he's not interested in growling or being death metal-levels of heavy in 2019. Hell, the guy even wrote an and deleted an entire death metal record after Watershed because he just wasn't that passionate about the genre anymore.
In a brand new interview with The Metal Tris, Åkerfeldt discusses what being heavy means to him in 2019 and how the term has kind of taken on a really amorphous definition over the years.
"I've been attacked over the years for not being heavy, which I understand. I would have thought the same when I was younger — 'That's not really heavy music.' Since then, I've found that nobody can say, for instance, and not comparing, [but] Mozart — that's a heavy experience. The music is heavy… Sometimes, we're traditional heavy, as in metal-heavy. Most of the time, the music that we write and record is heavy in the traditional sense, and sometimes in the sense of something else like a feeling [or] a heavy emotion. But that explanation doesn't really come across to people who have made up their mind that we're not heavy, and that's fine. I completely understand, but my idea of heaviness has changed over the years where I sometimes feel that traditional heavy sounds weak. For that reason, it kind of lost its luster from when I was kid [when I believed] the heavier, the better. Because I'm older, when I speak of heavy, I speak of slow, doomy music. That's what heavy means — not grindcore. I'm kind of confused as to the subject of what heavy means."
Later in the interview, Åkerfeldt classifies the band as peerless. Not in a cocky way either – Åkerfeldt doesn't really know what to classify Opeth as, saying "I don't really know what we are, but I know that we are unique, [and] that if we stop playing, there will be a void, I think. I think we're fairly unique, for good and bad."