Wiegedood are a Belgian black metal band and this is their fourth album.
Featuring current and ex-members of Living Gate, Amenra, and Oathbreaker, There’s Always Blood at the End of the Road features 44 minutes of new material. I really, really liked 2017’s De Doden Hebben Het Goed II, so I was looking forward to this new one, (apparently there was also an album after this from 2018, which I somehow managed to miss out on). As we’ll see below though, the Wiegedood of 2022 is a different beast to the one I knew. Since I last heard them Wiegedood’s sound has changed, and they have now become more extreme and more idiosyncratic.
I freely admit I was not prepared for what this album had in store for me. The violent intensity, the grim atmosphere, the melodic harshness…the unrelenting blackened nightmare of Wiegedood’s vision brought to life took me by surprise.
The songs are striking the first time you hear them, in more ways than one. Some of the riffs, noises, and ideas made me sit up and really pay attention, or simply stare at my speaker mouthing “oh shit” to myself. This record is nothing if not notable. It’s also quite experimental and progressive in its own nasty, horrible way. There is an industrial feel to some parts of the music, a hypnotic repetitive quality that seems both inhuman in its cold delivery and soothing in its merciless extremity.
This is modern black metal that takes strengths from the classic style to produce something modern and absolutely scorching. The acerbic atmospheric side of the band is intact, but the lethal intensity and sheer blackened brutality of the music has really been taken to another level. This is also true of the vocals, which most of the time are about as intense as it can get for a human to make without rupturing something. They’re simply a tortured joy to hear.
Oh my, and there are some absolutely murderous riffs on this beast of an album. I could say the same for the scathing melodies too.
The new direction showcased on There’s Always Blood at the End of the Road is a masterclass in how to produce abrasive black metal, while also developing identity and pushing the limits of what the style is capable of. Atmospheric and savage, Wiegedood have produced a monster here.