New OPETH Album: News & Latest Updates

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In Cauda Venenum got a release in 2019. It’s now 2022. When can we expect a new OPETH album? Here are ALL the latest news and updates…

OPETH is one of my favorite bands EVER. Blackwater Park, for me, is one of the greatest metal albums ever recorded. From the song composition to the production and vocals, the damn thing is flawless from front to back. 2019’s In Cauda Venenum didn’t blow me away if I’m honest, but it was an OK album – just not as good as I was expecting.

And while 2019 isn’t that long ago, in the grand scheme of things today, it might as well have been 15 years ago – so much has happened in such a small amount of time on the global stage. COVID ruined everything, including live music, for the best part of two years. And we’re still not out of the darkness yet either.

Because there has been a distinct lack of touring, many bands and artists have been holed up working on new material. Mastodon, for instance, produced some of its best work to date during the COVID pandemic, with its Hushed and Grim record which is an utter masterpiece of epic proportions. But what about OPETH? Has Mikael Åkerfeldt been busy during lockdown, working on a new OPETH album?

When Will We Hear New OPETH Songs?

With In Cauda Venenum now in the past, you’d imagine work was duly underway on new OPETH material. At least, that’s what most people assumed. However, this hasn’t been the case. In an interview with Loudwire, Åkerfeldt confirmed that he hasn’t worked on or developed ANY new OPETH material during the COVID pandemic.

New OPETH Album: News & Latest Updates

This comment effectively puts the breaks on the idea of a new OPETH album happening any time soon. Usually, when working on a new album, a band will take 12 to 18 months to develop material and then another 12 months to demo, record, mix, and master.

If Åkerfeldt hasn’t started on ANY new OPETH material then we could be looking at 2024 – at the very earliest – before we see or hear anything new from the band.

But Åkerfeldt is a prolific songwriter. It is almost impossible to imagine him NOT working on music during the pandemic, especially when so many of his peers have used the downtime to produce some of the best work of their careers. Turns out Åkerfeldt has been busy, just not with OPETH stuff…

In a way, I don’t wanna come across as insensitive, but the pandemic hit at a good time for me, work-wise, because I’ve been offered to do a film score, basically, for a series. The director is Jonas Akerlund, who’s mostly known for making music videos for Madonna and Lady Gaga. He has a past in heavy metal. He was in a band called Bathory years ago. And he’s a friend of mine.

He asked if I would be interested in scoring music for a TV series that’s coming out on Netflix about a guy called Clark Olofsson, who was a famous, infamous robber, basically. So it’s almost like a biopic. So I’m writing music that’s supposed to fit in from the [the 1940s] and onwards. So that’s been fun. So I’ve been doing that. I’m still kind of working on that.


Possible New OPETH Album Release Date

As it stands, things aren’t looking great for a new OPETH record any time soon. Could In Cauda Venenum be the band’s last record? It is possible. OPETH has been releasing records since 1995. Åkerfeldt isn’t getting any younger, so perhaps he is eyeing a career change, something to do post-OPETH?

As a composer, Åkerfeldt has plenty of chops, so I cannot wait to hear his soundtrack work on the Netflix show whenever that arrives. As for OPETH, I would really like a new record from the band. I don’t feel like In Cauda Venenum would be a good way to end things for a band with such a rich history. The record was generally well-received by the music press but I just found it a little flat compared to the band’s other records.

Who knows, maybe OPETH – or Åkerfeldt – has lost his passion for the band and wants to wind things down? I don’t buy into this sentiment. OPETH has a huge following and, like TOOL, makes a killing when it goes on tour. Åkerfeldt isn’t going to put an end to that anytime soon, not when he’s not yet established as a film composer.

My best guess is that we’ll see a new OPETH album in 2024. Once Åkerfeldt’s film scoring commitments are done, he’ll need a new project, that will almost certainly be OPETH, so work will begin on new songs. In 2023, the band will begin demoing and finessing the tracks, before recording them and then, finally, releasing a new album in 2024. At least, that’s my best guess on what’s going to happen.

I just hope to god that In Cauda Venenum doesn’t end up being OPETH’s last album…

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