Rétablir L’Eternité, the new album from the Paris group WuW, opens with the feeling of a soundtrack to the observation of destruction. Throughout much of the entirely instrumental, five-track piece, the band stick to solemnly persistent, heavy riffing that feels like it’s growing to immerse listeners like a steadily approaching tidal wave. In the absence of a brazenly physically overwhelming cacophony, WuW have stuck to building psychological tension with their new album’s deeply stirring portrait of the more stillness-oriented side of chaos.
The soundtrack feel really can’t be overstated, and it amplifies the richly immersive qualities of this music big time. Imagine the music that might play while flames crackle towards the sky from an enveloped home or when a natural disaster unfolds, washing away a community. The persistent heaviness of Rétablir L’Eternité delivers the emotionally sincere-feeling gravity to round out those dismal, solemnly still situations. The sonically suggested scenes play out in the shadow of broad chaos, but they’re stiller and more reserved than other incarnations. The group’s heavy music trods slowly and somberly, but persistently. The more directly heavy hits, when they do come, feel emotionally loaded, like a psychological weight.
Some of the more directly fast moments emerge on opening track “Ce Silence Qui Nous Délivre De Tout” amidst the solemnly heavy riffing, accompanied by an irregular-feeling, jittery drum rhythm. During this opening segue, the riffing repeatedly builds up into dramatic blasts. As the music evolves into a slower progression, the pulsating riffs keep the beast alive and thereby amplify the personally emotionally accessible feeling of solemn destruction. The eventual dynamic swings include especially heavier and louder blasts of groove on track two, although that same moderately paced, mid-tempo march keeps up, which concocts a sense of unease.
There’s a somewhat alluringly hypnotic effect in the persistence of Rétablir L’Eternité. The broadly swinging music feels like the expression of a wide scope of desolation, like WuW are presenting an ominously empty landscape. The ominous, uneasy feeling seems even further amplified by resonating synths that occasionally follow along with the album’s riff patterns. The music comes to a head on track four, which features a cacophony including a saxophone and hints of apparent tremolo picking. The concluding minutes album’s also get loud and fast, but the cacophony, emotional lurches and all, feels well-earned and memorable.
Listen to the music below! It’s available via Prosthetic Records.