Heiress
Of Great Sorrow


4.0
excellent

Review

by cryptside USER (76 Reviews)
February 21st, 2015 | 77 replies


Release Date: 02/03/2015 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Of Great Sorrow proves that a band can utilize a broad palette of influences and still sound frighteningly monolithic.

It's difficult to possess a sound that can be simultaneously haunting and ferocious, but Heiress have nailed it with Of Great Sorrow. Complete with sludgy riffs, visceral hardcore screams, and an expansive atmosphere, it's fairly safe to say that the band have been able to carve a signature niche for themselves with this album. It's noteworthy because if nothing else, the band have been able to take a hardcore/post metal approach and successfully add more dimension to it. One of the more interesting things that Heiress have accomplished here is the strong sense of a full listening experience from start to finish. Each song seamlessly blends into the next, naturally introducing new influences from track to track in a way that enhances the end product. The short and ferocious "Dehumaned" transitions beautifully into the ambient intro of "Held", which in turn slowly builds up to a singular (but very heavy) riff and demented screams from vocalist John Pettibone (of Himsa fame). Moments like these are littered throughout the album, with the band favoring the almighty emotional payoff that the crescendo provides. This obviously hinders the album in some ways, if only for the fact that some tracks never end up providing said payoff. For example, "Blading" boasts one of Pettibone's best vocal performances but never really gets going in terms of pacing and structure. It doesn't necessarily take away from the success of the album at large, but it does end up causing a few moments that just sound dull compared to rest of the record.

With some tracks falling flat on their own, it is easy to wonder why this would even be worthy of a listen. The aspect that holds it all together is the fantastic production job; there is a dry, almost arid quality to it that further projects a very specific and unique sound for the band. The clean guitar intro to "Lashings" reeks of despondence, and the forlorn vibe really is present in every crack and crevice of the album. It's this depressive atmosphere that saves some of the shortcomings present, from Pettibone's limited range to the somewhat predictable drums. In addition to this, Heiress do provide slight detours in terms of sound throughout Of Great Sorrow, showing just enough variety with "Old Haunts" being the best example of this. An eerie guitar line repeats itself while echoing screams in the background penetrate the restrained drums and dark atmosphere. It's more than a little disturbing, but Heiress handle the oddities that pop up here and there quite well. Alternatively "Silent Hooves" provides heaps of groove and riffs, providing further proof of the band's ability to craft songs that are a bit more straightforward and immediately accessible. Of Great Sorrow proves that a band can utilize a broad palette of influences and still sound frighteningly monolithic. As the meandering and thoughtful instrumental "Just Two Figures" ends the album not with a bang but a whisper, I can't help but think that they are on the verge of something brilliant here; this is simply the beginning of it.



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Chart.
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Comments:Add a Comment 
cryptside
February 21st 2015


2397 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

This is really good, maybe not everyone's cup of tea though. Also, I struggled writing this for a few days,

so I am hoping it doesn't come across as fragmented.



Stream: https://heiressband.bandcamp.com/album/of-great-sorrow

Ponton
Emeritus
February 21st 2015


6137 Comments


"have been able carve"

needs a 'to' in the third/fourth line

i liked the read but you've got an odd duality there with the album's strengths/weaknesses. you say its memorable because it has no stand out tracks, but then you say shortly later that it hinders the album in the same paragraph. Then you say it's actually worth a listen, not because the way the album flows as stated before, but because of its production job.

Digging: Car Seat Headrest - Teens of Denial

cryptside
February 21st 2015


2397 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Thanks man, will revisit a better way to phrase it. I knew I would run into a problem like this because I generally write my reviews in one sitting. Let me edit it a bit and see where it goes.

Ponton
Emeritus
February 21st 2015


6137 Comments


all good dude, im not infallible myself, certainly not but figured it was worth mentioning. nice to meet you, im jared

cryptside
February 21st 2015


2397 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Nice to meet you jared, have run across quite a few of your reviews in my time here. Glad to see that you're back on staff. I might poke you when I rewrite a bit of this to see if I can get rid of the duality.

cryptside
February 21st 2015


2397 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Okay, changed this up quite a bit. The wording for lack of standout tracks was kind of meant to imply that it worked better as an album than a collection of tracks, so hopefully it reads a little more smoothly.

Ponton
Emeritus
February 21st 2015


6137 Comments


Excellent. Grade A. Feature requested.

cryptside
February 21st 2015


2397 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Awesome, man! I appreciate the feedback!

Ponton
Emeritus
February 21st 2015


6137 Comments


They don't listen to me cuz I'm drunk 24/7 but seriously looks great. We will see.

In other news m/

cryptside
February 21st 2015


2397 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Lol dw you don't need to be lucid or make sense to have my respect. Thanks again for the feedback, it really helped on this one. I wanted it to be good given the fact that it's my first as Contrib haha.

Curse.
February 21st 2015


8053 Comments


I just got this on vinyl the other day, I love this album

cryptside
February 21st 2015


2397 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Nice, Josh. I was going to shoutbox you, oddly enough. Lol I had never heard of Heiress but the album cover looked cool, so I checked Sput and saw your review for the first album and thought, "This will probably be awesome."

cryptside
February 21st 2015


2397 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Whoo, featured! Thanks to Jared!

Jade
Emeritus
February 21st 2015


10698 Comments


I might need to check this out. Congrats on the promotion, dude! I think we talked a long time ago but it has certainly been a hot minute.

cryptside
February 21st 2015


2397 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Thanks Jacob. Definitely check this one out, it's very well done. Yeah, we haven't talked in forever. Hope all is well!

Jade
Emeritus
February 21st 2015


10698 Comments


Things have been alright, man. I'm just glad I'm able to be around these parts more, life has been quite busy. I've also been getting back into writing, which has been wonderful to be honest.

cryptside
February 21st 2015


2397 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Glad to hear it, dude. Yeah, things have been incredibly busy work and life-wise for me as well. I think I have finally figured out how to balance that aspect of my life with being able to consistently write reviews, which I have struggled with in the past.

blackwatercity
February 21st 2015


16 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Just gave the first track a listen, sounds really good. And good review.

cryptside
February 21st 2015


2397 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Thanks man, if you're digging the first track you'll have a lot to love later on. I think all of the gems are the later songs.

SharkTooth
February 21st 2015


13751 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Complete with sludgy riffs, visceral hardcore screams, and an expansive atmosphere,

sounds like something I'd dig[:



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