Music is meant to transport us, it’s meant to takes us away from where we are, the physical world and take us to a new place, a place we can only reach through music. Wode and their self titled debut album accomplished that. I felt myself drift away from this world into the past, a decade ago when I was first discovering metal.
The production is not raw but it’s not clear either, it occupies a place in between that gives the music an industrial feel despite Wode not bring an industrial black metal band. They, too, aren’t an atmospheric or ambient band but they have a similar feel to bands like Leviathan and Xasthur. They were their influences on their sleeves without having to rely too heavily on them. They operate with just enough nostalgia to be able to sound familiar yet new. I like finding bands that do that, they are not outlandish but they aren’t copies.
The music is powerful, enveloping the listener in a swath of black silk and yanking them off the ground. The guitars are blazing fast, creating a massive torrent of sound like a tsunami that destroys anything in its path. The listener is forced to allow the music to take them where the musicians dictate. The drums are a strong foundation, a deep counterpart to the high pitched guitars. The final element to the sound, the vocals, are dirty and raw, much rawer and more unrefined than the rest of the music, setting them apart and giving them special focus. They sound like something akin to a frog gurgle, something deep and sinister yet oddly natural, especially with the back drop of the music.
This album is a must listen, an album of the year candidate. It has everything that a metal album requires in my mind, a beautiful but malignant work of art.