Sometimes I wonder if I am the right person to cover a certain band or style, while other times I feel my choice to lend an ear to an album couldn’t come at a better time. In the case of Aussie self-labeled “cinema-core, “coming into the middle of a continuing story could have been like dropping into the Marvel Cinematic Universe in the middle and being totally confused.
You may be justifiably worried that you will be lost in a story that started four records (one LP, three EPs) ago with 2016’s Fear Me. Will you, someone who likely heard about the band for the first time now, with this being their first for new label Sharptone, be completely lost to the story beats and references to key characters? More important to someone like me who has to enjoy the noises coming from a given record, is this a fun musical journey that can be appreciated without needing to comb the lyrics sheet for the full picture?
I can answer both in the affirmative, in a rather resounding fashion. Trinity is the best metalcore record of 2022, and I’m not sure there’s a close second. I’m of a mind that a good-to-great story should be clearly communicated irrespective of your knowledge of the genre or cinematic universe. In simpler terms, my preference is always for standalone stories, even in continuing series.
Give me a new hook each time; don’t dangle twists that require encyclopedic knowledge every five minutes, like the MCU does in obvious, winking fashion. I won’t spend too much time decrying the MCU here because I’m not the target market (I graduated from comics to horror the day I found Goosebumps in second grade), but it’s clear that The Gloom In The Corner understand the value of producing compelling content first and foremost. The story here has many callbacks and references, but the twists and turns are easily understood and clearly communicated. It’s a classic spy thriller modernized.
Musically, there is a whole universe going on here, and while the individual ingredients may be familiar (metalcore, deathcore, djent, nu-metal, musical theater, and post-hardcore), the sheer scope and smooth sonic transitions are next level throughout. If your thought in seeing “theatrical metalcore” thrown around for this band gave you allusions to Ice Nine Kills, The Gloom In the Corner aim for a bit broader aspirations. They also gleefully subvert your expectations at every (sorry) corner, taking an almost meta approach to heavy core-influenced music.
Each of the 13 tracks offer up a new surprise or emphasis, not to mention a whopping 11 guest vocalists to lend various story beats a unique bend. Though it must be said that, despite all the talent throughout, vocalist Mikey Arthur is the most impressive of the bunch (you would hope so on his own material), showcasing a very impressive range. Hell, just trying to fully encapsulate what Trinity sounds like is a bit challenging, except to say parts of the album remind me of bands from a decade ago who straddled the line between metalcore and deathcore, filtered through a more progressive and nu-metal lens. Imagine Make Them Suffer and Alpha Wolf coming together to write a metalcore opera, and you’re halfway there (livin’ on a prayer).
I mentioned modernized above because truly so much of The Gloom In The Corner feels like the future of modern metal: unafraid to seamlessly blend subgenres, focusing on pit-starting riffs and killer hooks above all, and with the type of storytelling that balances t-shirt slogans with genuine emotion. I appreciate Trinity more with each listen, not because The Gloom In The Corner hide their cards but because there are so many worthwhile cards throughout this packed release. A real stunner and a benchmark for metalcore going forward. Take the plunge.
Order the record at this location.