- Band(s): Heloisa
- Label(s): Goatlordth Records
- Release Format(s): 12" vinyl, Re-Release
- Release Year: 2022
- Review Date: March 1, 2023
- Author(s): Colin McNamara
Heloisa’s ‘Mirror of Trinity’ is not a new album, but more of a “lost gem” being reissued. Originally released on tape back in 1998, this early Malaysian example of Death Doom is very different from what many might expect by today’s standards. Far from the heavy progressive tropes of Evadne or the gothic beauty of Wine of Tears or even modern Paradise Lost with a classic clean/harsh vocal approach, the music here is very dissonant and stripped down, sounding almost like Blackened Doom versus Death Doom. The vocals have that higher pitched watery rasp to them similar to Death with a mix of clean vocals (also sounding like they are underwater) here and there, but the riff style is drawn out along with the click of the drums, and that is more in line with very early Paradise Lost. Heloisa had a short run until about 2003, but have since resumed a quiet activity since 2011. A but surprising they are being ‘brought to attention’ almost twenty years later, but after giving ‘Mirror of Trinity’ a listen, one can hear the roots of Doom Death here and see its influence spread to the likes of other groups anywhere from Cradle of Filth to Arch Enemy.
Like a lot of 90s Metal bands, expect production and sound to be a bit raw. Drums have that train track “click” to them versus the aggressive, funeral thump a lot of modern Doom bands go for, and the riffs and vocal structure track after track do start to wear a bit as they all sound them same after a while, but despite this there as a lot of melody layered in the tracks, especially when one considers a track like ‘At Dawn They Arrive’. And when hearing ‘Princess’ the bass is more audible and enjoyed which is usually lost in a lot of Doom records, especially with Funeral Doom. For those looking for something a bit more like Heavy Metal Doom inspired, ‘A.N.T.’ has less of that gothic tone to it and just more of that 80s groove to it. ‘The Falling Tears’ is more of a faster track, but with more clean vocals added with distortion for that echoing effect, but still very Doom Death laden and inspired with a bit of that “Fantasy Metal” vibe to it. A good example of how a lot of Gothic Doom modern directions went.
Overall a lot of fans might be put off with the raw direction this album went for its time. By today’s standards it certainly sounds more Siebenburgen meets Paradise Lost between the vocals and riffs, and far from the deep growl and slow, drawn out riffs or mix of mournful clean sections with furious bellows of pummeling blast beats that modern Doom bands like Novembers Doom have employed, but the level of distortions and melodies provided by ‘Mirror of Trinity’ is still fascinating. Hopefully with giant gap of time eventually the 5 piece will put out a new album, and it will be interesting to see how much Heloisa shifts from a late 90s sound to a more modern Death Doom one. Maybe it will be a complete 180, and maybe a mix of both, but listeners should be sure to check out this piece of history to see how it has helped shape some of the more modern and bigger names in the current Metal world.
- Country: Malaysia
- Style: Death Metal, Doom Metal
- Links: Youtube
- Country: Malaysia
- Style: Black Metal, Death Metal
- Links: Facebook, Instagram, Bandcamp, Youtube