Yngwie Malmsteen shreds on what he once called “a piece of furniture”: the Gibson Les Paul

By Steve Newton One of my most popular posts on Ear of Newt is the one where Yngwie Malmsteen calls Ibanez guitars “a bad copy” of the Strat and says Les Pauls are “furniture”. Well, if you ever wondered what the Swedish Fender freak would sound like shredding on a piece of furniture, here ya … Continue reading Yngwie Malmsteen shreds on what he once called “a piece of furniture”: the Gibson Les Paul

That time Yngwie Malmsteen told me that no guitar could possibly do what the Stratocaster does

By Steve Newton Yngwie Malmsteen is synonymous with the Fender Stratocaster. Since the get-go he’s proclaimed the superiority of Leo Fender’s classy creation. He’s even gone so far as to compare the competition to “bad copies” and “furniture”. So when I interviewed him back in 2014 I asked him if he’d ever been tempted to … Continue reading That time Yngwie Malmsteen told me that no guitar could possibly do what the Stratocaster does

That time Mick Mars told me that Yngwie Malmsteen could be the world’s best guitarist if he’d just change his attitude

By Steve Newton Back in November of 1985 I interviewed Motley Crue guitarist Mick Mars the same day his band played Vancouver on its Theatre of Pain tour. At one point in the conversation we were talking fave guitar players–his (and mine) being Jeff Beck–and I asked him how he felt about the new superstars … Continue reading That time Mick Mars told me that Yngwie Malmsteen could be the world’s best guitarist if he’d just change his attitude

Joe Satriani responds to Yngwie Malmsteen’s claim that Ibanez guitars are “a bad copy” of the Strat

By Steve Newton I did my eighth interview with Joe Satriani a couple years ago, and finally got to ask him about something that his former G3 tourmate Yngwie Malmsteen once said to me. Back in 2014 I had interviewed Yngwie in advance of his Guitar Gods show in Vancouver, and that was when he … Continue reading Joe Satriani responds to Yngwie Malmsteen’s claim that Ibanez guitars are “a bad copy” of the Strat

Album review: Yngwie Malmsteen’s Rising Force, Marching Out (1985)

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, NOV. 8, 1985 By Steve Newton Swedish guitar hero Yngwie Malmsteen has been heralded as the rock guitarist of the eighties, a successor to Eddie Van Halen and the late Randy Rhoads. And there’s no doubt that Yngwie is several cuts above the typical metal guitarist. But blinding speed and technical dazzle … Continue reading Album review: Yngwie Malmsteen’s Rising Force, Marching Out (1985)

Caught on tape: that time Strat fanatic Yngwie Malmsteen trash-talked Ibanez and Les Paul guitars

By Steve Newton The most popular story I ever posted on Ear of Newt–until I broke the news about AC/DC being spotted in Vancouver back in 2018–was the one from 2014 with the headline Yngwie Malmsteen calls Ibanez guitars “a bad copy” of the Strat and says Les Pauls are “furniture”. For some reason people–mostly guitar … Continue reading Caught on tape: that time Strat fanatic Yngwie Malmsteen trash-talked Ibanez and Les Paul guitars

Album review: Yngwie Malmsteen, Eclipse (1990)

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, AUG. 23, 1990 By Steve Newton When Swedish guitar whiz Yngwie Malmsteen burst onto the hard-rock scene in ’84 with the Rising Force album, he took a lot of people by surprise—and it wasn’t just his funny name (pronounced “Ing-vay”) that did it. Malmsteen was a classically influenced speed-demon, … Continue reading Album review: Yngwie Malmsteen, Eclipse (1990)

That time Yngwie Malmsteen told me that he was inspired by Stephen King, H.P. Lovecraft, and Leonardo da Vinci

By Steve Newton Yngwie Malmsteen is famous for his blistering speed on the fretboard, but his choice of reading material isn’t nearly as well known. The first time I interviewed the Swedish guitar legend, back in 1985, he had recently released his second solo album, Marching Out, which included a thank you to Stephen King. Turns … Continue reading That time Yngwie Malmsteen told me that he was inspired by Stephen King, H.P. Lovecraft, and Leonardo da Vinci

That time Yngwie Malmsteen told me that he escaped the Swedish army by threatening to shoot himself

By Steve Newton The first time I interviewed Yngwie Malmsteen, back in December of 1985, he was touring with Ronnie James Dio as opening act on the Sacred Heart tour. He was only 22 at the time, and four years earlier had spent a very brief stint in the Swedish army. Like, two days. When … Continue reading That time Yngwie Malmsteen told me that he escaped the Swedish army by threatening to shoot himself

That time Yngwie Malmsteen slagged W.A.S.P. and told me that heavy metal is “all crap”

By Steve Newton The first time I interviewed Yngwie Malmsteen was back in December of 1985, when he was opening act on Dio‘s Sacred Heart tour. Malmsteen was only 22 at the time, full of piss and vinegar–kinda like he is now!–and ready to toss opinions around like they were notes flying off his fretboard. … Continue reading That time Yngwie Malmsteen slagged W.A.S.P. and told me that heavy metal is “all crap”

That time Ronnie James Dio told me what he really thought of Ritchie Blackmore and Yngwie Malmsteen as guitarists

By Steve Newton Back in 1985 I did my only interview with Ronnie James Dio, who was headed to Vancouver on the Sacred Heart Tour, with Yngwie Malmsteen‘s Rising Force opening up. At one point in the conversation the legendary heavy-metal crooner compared the guitar-playing abilities of his former bandmate Ritchie Blackmore to those of … Continue reading That time Ronnie James Dio told me what he really thought of Ritchie Blackmore and Yngwie Malmsteen as guitarists

Tosin Abasi doesn’t think Yngwie Malmsteen is a pompous ass: “It’s just his clarity of vision”

By Steve Newton When I interviewed guitar hero Tosin Abasi before the Animals as Leaders concert in Vancouver in 2016, I asked him a few questions about the pickers he’d performed with earlier that year on the Generation Axe tour. As well as Steve Vai, Zakk Wylde, and Nuno Bettencourt, Abasi was in the company … Continue reading Tosin Abasi doesn’t think Yngwie Malmsteen is a pompous ass: “It’s just his clarity of vision”

Graham Bonnet was bandmates with Ritchie Blackmore, Michael Schenker, and Yngwie Malmsteen, but called Gary Moore his hero

By Steve Newton When I interviewed Graham Bonnet back in 1984 he was fronting a hard-rock/metal band called Alcatrazz that featured an unknown guitarist named Yngwie Malmsteen, who would not stay unknown for long. Two years earlier Bonnet had been a member of the Michael Schenker Group, which also boasted an amazing guitar player, a guy … Continue reading Graham Bonnet was bandmates with Ritchie Blackmore, Michael Schenker, and Yngwie Malmsteen, but called Gary Moore his hero

That time Graham Bonnet told me about unknown Alcatrazz guitarist Yngwie Malmsteen: “He’s one day gonna be a star”

By Steve Newton Back in the ’80s one of my jobs at the Georgia Straight newspaper in Vancouver was to cover the hard-rock/heavy metal beat. Soon after getting hired as a proofreader/typesetter in ’82 I was doing articles on Priest, Scorps, Maiden, and Ozzy, which–to my utter delight–often ended up as the cover story. Metal was … Continue reading That time Graham Bonnet told me about unknown Alcatrazz guitarist Yngwie Malmsteen: “He’s one day gonna be a star”

Outraged guitar freak defends Yngwie Malmsteen and rips the s*** out of my Generation Axe review

By Steve Newton Some guy named Fretfire did not totally agree with my review of the Generation Axe show in Vancouver the other night. Here’s his comment: Pathetic, Steve. I thought you were cooler than this, especially since you recently posted the interview: “Uli Jon Roth calls Yngwie Malmsteen “one of the alltime greats”, but says he’s … Continue reading Outraged guitar freak defends Yngwie Malmsteen and rips the s*** out of my Generation Axe review

That time Uli Jon Roth told me that Yngwie Malmsteen was “one of the alltime greats”, but that he wasn’t impressed by speed

By Steve Newton When Uli Jon Roth called me up in 2016 to promote his Ultimate Guitar Experience show in Vancouver, we ended up chatting about some of the other guitar tours he’s been on, like the G3 European Tour back in 1998, when he shared the stage with Joe Satriani and Michael Schenker, who … Continue reading That time Uli Jon Roth told me that Yngwie Malmsteen was “one of the alltime greats”, but that he wasn’t impressed by speed

Steve Vai on cocky G3 tourmate Yngwie Malmsteen and tormented “genius” Devin Townsend

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN THE GEORGIA STRAIGHT, OCT. 9, 2003 By Steve Newton I was a tad taken aback when the press release came in announcing the lineup for Joe Satriani’s 2003 G3 Tour. It wasn’t a surprise to see long-time G3er (and former Satch student) Steve Vai’s name on the bill. But I didn’t expect … Continue reading Steve Vai on cocky G3 tourmate Yngwie Malmsteen and tormented “genius” Devin Townsend

Yngwie Malmsteen puts Ritchie Blackmore rumours to rest, praises Nicolo Paganini and Uli Jon Roth

By Steve Newton Yngwie Malmsteen likes to wear all black on-stage and play fast as hell on a Fender Strat through a wall of cranked Marshall amps, so you might think that Ritchie Blackmore is his hero. “Okay, let’s correct that,” says Malmsteen when I mention that Wikipedia names the six-string legend from Deep Purple … Continue reading Yngwie Malmsteen puts Ritchie Blackmore rumours to rest, praises Nicolo Paganini and Uli Jon Roth