We won’t last forever. The harsh realities of life, however — including the fact, on a personal level, that we all die, and more broadly, that we’re hurtling through society-altering climate change and security challenges — don’t have to stunt us.
The Belgian post-rock band Wanheda prove as much. They introduced themselves to the world with the marvelously expansive full length The Cenozoic Implosion in spring 2018; the purposeful but open ended work charts a vision of the decline of humanity and our world as a whole. The cover art itself depicts a broken, tattered planet.
There’s more to Wanheda, though, than a familiar rehashing of the issues we face. Their music feels intentionally broad. Without even any vocals, the direction the melody can go remains up to the listener, in a sense. Once the record concludes, only ingenuity stops where it goes next.
The band intended for this feature’s place, they explain.
“The songs are expressing the failure of humanity and the imminent end of the world. That’s the whole idea behind The Cenozoic Implosion — but the beauty of instrumental music is that songs can express whatever you want them to express,” they add. “We all feel and think about different things when playing our songs. We love to play organic songs that really flow from one part to another and give us an escape from the busy world, while becoming calm in our inner selves.”
“We love the fact that it is definitely not the same for everyone,” they continue. “Instrumental music has no straight up front message, defined by words. It doesn’t HAVE to mean something — maybe that’s the beauty of it.”
Their main intent rests with opening up the flow.
“We want to play a genre where musicians can put their emotions in their instruments and music,” as they put it. “Hopefully people can enjoy our music and give their own interpretation to our music without a singing voice to chew it for them… We try to make everything we write a musical journey. We think the best way to experience our music is to get comfortable, put on your headphones and listen to the album front to back. This was our intention and we think it is best felt this way.”
The music stands ready to find a place with the listener. After all, we don’t really know what’s going to happen next, taking a step back from the songs themselves. Some may call it God, and some may call it fate and chance — but possibility always sits out there.
In similar fashion, Wanheda insist that there are no real restrictions they place on themselves during their music writing process. They’ve reached into themselves, and The Cenozoic Implosion is what emerged. “Everything goes — just pour your musical heart out,” they say. Their music proves their musical ingenuity.
Their metaphorical hearts have continued to pour out in the time since their debut full length released in April 2018, sharing not long after that they’d been working diligently on fleshing out new ideas. The writing process could conclude next spring, but they’re not in a hurry.
In the meantime, interested fans in Europe can catch the band around Belgium in November and December 2018.
They share: “The post rock scene seems to be a mix of vastly different people. It’s a very niche genre and that makes it stretch quite internationally. We love going to Dunk festival and many of us go to Arctangent festival every year. People there are social, super kind, open minded. They’re amazing places to be!”
Listen to the band below on Spotify.