As We Slowly Fade is the sixth full length of HellLight and it comes out just ten years after that Funeral Doom that made the name of Fabio De Paula’s band jump to the attention of the fans. A few months ago I listened to that work, which presented a mountain of magnificent intuitions, even if inserted inside a structure that could be perfected under different aspects, and you can’t help noticing how the Brazilian musician undertook a slow but constant progression that brought his band to become one of the most respected names in the doom field, not only in South America. The melodic and atmospheric death doom displayed in As We Slowly Fade, on the other hand, is as European as ever in terms of style and musical expression, gravitating in the Saturnus orbit together with realities such as Doom:VS and When Nothing Remains: De Paula’s guitar work is of the highest quality, as well as the whole instrumental compartment that sees the faithful Alexandre Vida on bass and the newcomer Renan Bianchi on drums to provide a punctual rhythmic support. The voice is what at times can take on a divisive character: if the growl is absolutely and positively in the norm, the clean vocals continue to leave some doubts for their being always a bit too stentorian and with the effect of attenuating the dramatic load of the songrwiting; it’s a case, or maybe not, that for me the best tracks of the album are The Ghost and The Land Of Broken Dreams, the only ones in which De Paula refrains from showing the clean voice and maybe for this reason, but not only, they are the closest to the funeral shores. But this is somehow a point that more than others is closely related to subjectivity: what matters is that the music of HellLight, once again, does not disappoint offering a valuable gift to all fans of this type of doom; the title track, While The Moon Darkens, and Bridge Between Life And Death are in fact long tracks but full of magnificent ideas and characterized by a high rate of evocativeness. The final track, Ocean, is a story in itself, a song to which also a female voice gives its contribution and in which the leader gives a few final minutes of poignant guitar melodies: a worthy ending for an album that, as usual for HellLight, is challenging for the listener especially because of a duration that as always exceeds one hour. As We Slowly Fade is, after all, an album that should not be missed by those who appreciate melodic death doom in its most emotionally elevated expressions.

2018 – Solitude Productions