Michael Amott
Background information
Birth Name Michael Amott
Born 28 July 1970
Occupation Bassist


Genres Death Metal

Melodic Death Metal
Stoner Metal
Thrash Metal

Instrument(s) Guitar

Bass Guitar

Years active 1983-Present
Labels Century Media
Associated acts Arch Enemy

Spiritual Beggars

[1] [1]

Michael Amott (born 28 July 1970) is an English-born Swedish guitarist, songwriter, founding member of the bands Arch Enemy, Spiritual Beggars, and Carnage, as well as a former member of the grindcore band Carcass. He is the older brother of Christopher Amott. Some major influences in his music have been Tony Iommi, Michael Schenker, Uli Jon Roth and Dave Mustaine. Michael's style features a wide vibrato, memorable melodic lead lines, furious sledgehammer riffs, and a love for twin guitar harmonies. He has previously stated that he favours pentatonics in his playing, and his solos are often compared to those of Schenker.

Amott was ranked No. 74 out of 100 Greatest Heavy Metal Guitarists of All Time by Guitar World.


In 1988, Michael co-founded the death metal band Carnage with Johan Liva. The band released two widely-traded cassette demos which gained underground interest. However, the band was to be plagued by line-up changes and their only album, Dark Recollections, was released with Amott as the only original member - by the time the album was released in 1990 on Necrosis Records, Carnage had split.

After the split in 1990, Michael wasted little time as he was recruited by grindcore juggernauts, Carcass, before releasing the seminal album Necrotism - Descanting the Insalubrious in 1991. This album was a musical turning point for the long running grindcore band, as the album was hailed as a death metal masterpiece, featuring the furious guitar work of Michael Amott. The bands best selling album Heartwork, released in 1994, helped to define what is now known as melodic death metal, featuring Amott's fluid lead lines and twin guitar work of Amott and Bill Steer.

Michael left Carcass in 1993 due to creative differences, and decided to form a classic rock influenced band, Spiritual Beggars. The band released their debut album Spiritual Beggars in 1994, which led to a European record deal with Music for Nations, who released Another Way to Shine in 1996.

Still heavily into extreme metal, Michael accepted an offer in 1996 from a new Swedish record label, W.A.R. Records, to record a melodic death metal project in the same vein as Carcass, whose Heartwork album was now considered a melodic death metal masterpiece. Michael contacted original Carnage vocalist Johan Liiva, as well as his younger brother Christopher Amott, who was attending music school at the time, and put together Arch Enemy. Featuring then session drummer Daniel Erlandsson, the band's first album Black Earth was originally intended to be a one-off project, but the album's first single, "Bury Me An Angel" received unexpected airplay on Japan's MTV Rocks! program, and in 1997 Arch Enemy was signed by major Japanese label Toy's Factory, and invited to tour Japan. Michael decided to put a full band together, recruiting drummer Peter Wildoer (Darkane), and bassist Martin Bengtsson.

After the Japanese tour, Michael returned to Spiritual Beggars and released Mantra III early in 1998, now featuring Per Wiberg on keyboards. In April the same year, Arch Enemy returned with Stigmata, their first album released outside of Japan, now on Century Media records. The album would prove to be a critical success, and Arch Enemy toured for the better part of the year. Later in 1998, Michael also contributed solos to the Candlemass album Dactylis Glomerata.

Arch Enemy returned in 1999 with Burning Bridges and Burning Japan Live 1999 which would prove to be Johan Liiva's last recording with the band. Michael went on to release Ad Astra with Spiritual Beggars in 2000, then returned to Arch Enemy, and recruited amateur German vocalist Angela Gossow to replace Liiva in 2000. Arch Enemy released Wages of Sin in 2001, and propelled by the new frontwoman, the band achieved new worldwide success. Arch Enemy toured worldwide in support of Wages of Sin, and Michael did not return to his Spiritual Beggars project until late 2002, releasing On Fire, again on Music For Nations. In 2003, Arch Enemy released Anthems of Rebellion, again on Century Media, and for the first time, Arch Enemy received US MTV airplay with the video for "We Will Rise". The band would reach new heights in popularity worldwide, and toured constantly until the release of 2005s Doomsday Machine, which saw the departure of Christopher Amott, who would go on to focus on his education. Michael returned once again to Spiritual Beggars in 2005, releasing the album Demons. He also recently performed a guest guitar solo on The Haunted's One Kill Wonder, for the song, "Bloodletting", and the latest Kreator record, 2005s "Enemy Of God", for the song "Murder Fantasies".

In 2006, Amott made his voice acting debut when he appeared on the Adult Swim show Metalocalypse. In the episode "Snakes 'n Barrels", he voiced scientist Dr. Amomolith Chesterfield and Snakes 'n Barrels bassist Antonio Tony DiMarco Thunderbottom, who would end up getting his memory erased during the first song of their reunion show.

In 2007, Arch Enemy released Rise of the Tyrant on Century Media and embarked on a world tour dubbed "World Tyranny".

In 2008, Amott joined the re-united Carcass and toured with them extensively in Europe, North America, South America, Australia, South Africa and Japan until the summer of 2010.

Today, Amott is busy touring the world with Arch Enemy on the band's current War Eternal touring cycle. Amott has also returned to Spiritual Beggars for the "Return To Zero" (2010) and "Earth Blues" (2013) albums.

Michael Amott showcasing his distinctive playing style with Arch Enemy in Tokyo

Michael Amott showcasing his distinctive playing style with Arch Enemy in Tokyo


With CarcassEdit

  • Necroticism - Descanting the Insalubrious (1991)
  • Heartwork (1993)

With Spiritual BeggarsEdit

With Arch EnemyEdit

  • Black Earth (1996)
  • Stigmata (1998)
  • Burning Bridges (1999)
  • Wages of Sin (2001)
  • Anthems of Rebellion (2003)
  • Doomsday Machine (2005)
  • Rise Of The Tyrant (2007)
  • The Root Of All Evil (2009)
  • Khaos Legions (2011)
  • War Eternal (2014)
  • Will To Power (2017)

With CandlemassEdit

With CarnageEdit

  • Dark Recollections (1990)



  • Dean Michael Amott Signature Tyrant Bloodstorm (2009)
  • Dean Schenker Flame V (2008)
  • ESP 2008 Ninja (used in the Black Crusade Tour '07/08; 2 versions, one with Floyd Rose tremolo, also 24 frets and 24.75 scale)
  • ESP-Ninja Michael Amott signature series (previously AV-395 Ninja)
  • ESP AV-310MA Flying V models (previous signature model only available in Japan, discontinued)
  • ESP Custom F-Series model (seen in Arch Enemy Live Apocalypse DVD)
  • ESP Vintage Plus (seen in the Spiritual Beggars "Killing Time" promotional video)
  • Ibanez RG 550 Road Flare Red (no longer used. Used in Carcass 1990–1992)
  • Fernandes "Burny" Les Paul Custom (White, used 1996–1999, featured in the Arch Enemy video 'The Immortal')
  • Fernandes "Burny" Les Paul Custom (Black, used 1996–1999.)

The 'Tyrant' series is similar to his previous ESP Signature V's, but does feature some differences from the ESP. It comes equipped with Dean USA Pickups, a Michael Amott signature humbucker in the bridge and a Time Capsule humbucker in the neck. The guitar has 22 frets.


  • Marshall JVM410H
  • Marshall JCM800 2205 50w
  • Marshall JCM2000 (Khaos Legions tour)
  • Randall MTS Series RM100 with Ultra XL modules (Rise of the Tyrant)
  • Peavey 5150 (previously used)


  • Homebrew Electronics 'Michael Amott' Signature Wah
  • Ibanez TS-808 Tube Screamer
  • MXR – Phase 90
  • Rocktron – Rackmounted Hush Super C
  • BOSS "TU-2" Chromatic Tuner
  • Digitech GSP1101 (Multi effects processor)
  • Line6 G90 Wireless Unit
  • Zoom G1M Michael Amott signature.


  • Rotosound Strings (11-59 Michael Amott signature set)

External LinksEdit

Michael Amott Official Facebook Page
Michael Amott Official Twitter
Spiritual Beggars Official Website
Spiritual Beggars Official Facebook Page
Spiritual Beggars Twitter


  1. 1.0 1.1 Spirit of Metal Michael Amott, first accessed 7th March 2016


V·T·E Spiritual Beggars
Current Members Michael AmottApollo PapathanasioSharlee D'AngeloPer WibergLudwig Witt
Past Members Christian "Spice" SjöstrandRoger NilssonJanne "JB" Christoffersson
Studio Albums Spiritual BeggarsAnother Way to ShineMantra IIIAd AstraOn FireDemonsReturn to ZeroEarth BluesSunrise to Sundown
Splits It's Over/Twilight Train
Singles Violet KarmaDiamond Under Pressure
Live Albums Return to Live: Live Park 2010
Video Releases Live Fire
Associated Bands and Artists Grand MagusFirebirdThe Mushroom River BandCandlemass
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