Opeth drop expansive new single, Width of a Circle, announce extended edition of In Cauda Venenum

Opeth's Mikael Åkerfeldt
(Image credit: Rick Kern/Getty Images)

Swedish prog metal giants Opeth have announced an extended edition of their 2019 album, In Cauda Venenum, sharing an expansive new single, Width of a Circle.

Released – like the rest of In Cauda Venenum – in both English and Swedish, the track is more accessible than much of the band's catalogue, with a mid-tempo groove, 4/4 time signature, catchy vocal hooks and some single-note palm-muted chugs.

But guitarists fear not, there's a nugget or two of six-string ear candy, namely in the form of a 40-second solo from the 2:39 mark, which is full of rapid ascending runs, dizzying sweeps, ultra-fast descending pull-off runs and soaring bends. Check it out below.

Arriving May 13 via the band's own Moderbolaget Records, In Cauda Venenum (Extended Edition) also features two additional tracks beyond Width of a Circle The Mob and Freedom & Tyranny – and the digipak CD will be accompanied a booklet with new illustrations by American graphic artist Travis Smith.

All three songs were included with the band's In Cauda Venenum (Connoisseur Edition), which was released in November last year on vinyl only – the extended edition of the album marks the digital and CD release of these bonus tracks.

In Cauda Venenum (Extended Edition) is available now for preorder. Head to the band's website for more info.

Opeth are scheduled to head off on the second leg of their co-headline tour with Mastodon in April. The trek will commence April 21 in Montreal, making 16 stops in the US and Canada, before wrapping up May 11 in Riverside, California. See a full list of dates below.

  • April 21: Place Bell – Montreal, QC
  • April 22: Queen Elizabeth Theatre – Toronto, ON
  • April 23: The Agora Theater & Ballroom – Cleveland, OH
  • April 24: Stage AE – Pittsburgh, PA
  • April 26: The Met – Philadelphia, PA
  • April 28: Aragon Ballroom – Chicago, IL
  • April 29: The Masonic Temple Theatre – Detroit, MI
  • April 30: The Rave/Eagles Club – Milwaukee, WI
  • May 1: Myth Live – St. Paul, MN
  • May 3: TCU Place – Saskatoon, SK
  • May 4: Grey Eagle Events Centre – Calgary, AB
  • May 5: EDM Expo Centre – Edmonton, AB
  • May 7: Thunderbird Sports Centre – Vancouver, BC
  • May 8: Paramount Theater – Seattle, WA
  • May 9: Keller Auditorium – Portland, OR
  • May 11: Municipal Auditorium – Riverside, CA

Back in 2020, Opeth frontman Mikael Åkerfeldt spoke with Guitar World about the making of In Cauda Venenum.

“This time I was ruthless,” he said. “I focused intently on what I love – not what the band likes or what people think we're supposed to be. On the last album [2016's Sorceress], there were a couple moments where I thought to myself, ‘Hey, let me write something the guys like playing.’ I loved it, too, but the first goal was to please them.

“This time, I was a complete narcissist. That's why it's more of an emotional record and the song arrangements are more elaborate and eclectic. It was about what sounded good to me.”

While there's currently no new Opeth material in the works – at least to our knowledge – fans can hear guitarist Fredrik Åkesson's contributions on Ghost's new album, Impera. As Åkesson explained earlier this month, he had to “scale down” his leads on the album, at the request of frontman Tobias Forge.

“It was very different [to recording with Opeth],” he told Guitar.com. “It was more of a session job. I thought I was going to be able to design a few solos but [Forge and producer Klas Åhlund] thought they were over the top. I had to scale it down, with more melodic solos – more constructed. Tobias and Klas were very picky.”

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Sam Roche

Sam was Staff Writer at GuitarWorld.com from 2019 to 2023, and also created content for Total Guitar, Guitarist and Guitar Player. He has well over 15 years of guitar playing under his belt, as well as a degree in Music Technology (Mixing and Mastering). He's a metalhead through and through, but has a thorough appreciation for all genres of music. In his spare time, Sam creates point-of-view guitar lesson videos on YouTube under the name Sightline Guitar.