Opeth's Mikael Akerfeldt: My 10 Favorite Metal Albums

Bandleader shouts out classics including Judas Priest's 'Sad Wings of Destiny' and Morbid Angel's 'Altars of Madness'

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Rainbow, 'Rising' (1976)

3. Rainbow, 'Rising' (1976)

Fantastic record. To be honest, Rainbow never put out, like, complete masterpieces, but the positive things outweigh the negative things to the point where it kind of always ends up in my top five. It's either that record or the first Rainbow record, which was just called Ritchie Blackmore's Rainbow. I love those two records, and the third one with Dio. I'm a sucker for Ronnie Dio, so, the three Dio records and the live album that they did. But Rising, obviously, it's got "Tarot Woman," it's got "Stargazer," which is, like, the biggest masterpiece of hard rock, one of those. It's up there with "Stairway to Heaven" and those types of songs.

Even "Do You Close Your Eyes," those types of songs, they're kind of cheesy in a way, but it gets your foot stomping. That record is "Tarot Woman" and "Stargazer," to me. ... They could have those two songs and the rest could be boogie-woogie shit songs that I never want to hear – it would still be a masterpiece record. ... They have the other epic song on Rising, the last song, "A Light in the Black," which I'm not too fond of, actually. I don't love that song – it's a bit too meandering to me. But "Stargazer," "Tarot Woman," especially those two songs, kind of pulls the weight of the rest. It's just a fantastic sound, musicianship, Ritchie Blackmore in his most kind of experimental mode, breaking away from Deep Purple and coming up with these masterpiece, epic songs. Cozy Powell on drums. Ronnie Dio on vocals – you can't go wrong. It's the ultimate lineup of master musicians right there. 

"Stargazer," when I go for walks, which I call my "old-man walks" ... I had a bunch of those, listening to Rainbow in my headphones, and it makes me cry because it's so good. Tears start rolling because it's so fucking good.

For us, everyone in this band loves "Stargazer." I think every serious fan of hard rock music would love "Stargazer." It's just one of those all-time, epic masterpieces. 

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