Legendary Swedish guitarist Yngwie Malmsteen spoke to Aftershocks TV about how he was compared to another groundbreaking axeman, Eddie Van Halen, early on in his career. Asked if he felt the comparisons were justified, Yngwie said (as transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET): "I don't believe in comparing anybody with anybody, because it's supposed to be an artform. However, in art, in any art, there will be trendsetters, basically — there will be people who come around and kind of, like, turn everything upside down, and Edward was definitely one of them. And I brought something different to the table also.
"I personally loved Eddie Van Halen — I thought he was amazing," Yngwie continued. "I loved everything he did since the first time I heard him. But I don't think it's a logical thing to compare artists. It's like [comparing Pablo] Picasso and [Leonardo] Da Vinci, which are completely different styles, but they're very well-regarded artists in their own right. It's a crazy thing to do."
Back in 2019, Malmsteen named Van Halen as one of the 10 guitarists who impressed him the most.
"I was 13 years old when that first fuckin' [VAN HALEN] album came out and it definitely caught my attention," Yngwie told Music Radar. "I wasn't into guitar players back then; it was all about classical. But what I loved about them was the rawness of it all — no overdubs; they just went in and fucking did it.
"He didn't have a Floyd Rose for those early records; it was just a vintage Fender bridge. I found those kind of locking vibrato arms kills the sound of the guitar. I use vintage trems and float my bridges quite a bit — usually about 5mm up so you can pull up, but not the whole way. Eddie's tone was great: just a 1959 Marshall all the way up and nothing turned down."
Yngwie's new album, "Parabellum", will be released on July 23 via Music Theories Recordings/Mascot Label Group. Only four of the songs on the LP feature vocals. The album title is Latin, translating as "Prepare For War".