Deathgrind has always been one of those genres that I can only listen to for a few songs by a few bands before I move onto something else, but I definitely love those few songs. Seattle natives Theories have definitely cemented themselves on my list of formidable artists in this niche genre. They can be easily hailed among the ranks of Aborted, Misery Index, and even grind-ier bands like Napalm Death, and Nasum with their newest album Regression released on Metal Blade Records.
The album artwork is highly representative of what the listener is in for. Regression is as bleak as it is devastating. It is the musical equivalent of being dragged through a barbed wasteland, and I wouldn’t have it any other way. A heady mix of razor sharp riffs and marching chord-work, adorns this ten-track sonic assault. Solid drums that hold up the groove through mid-paced sections, while being crushingly cacophonous in the more technical parts with plenty of blast-beats and double-bass, satisfy even the most ardent death metal listener. Influential touches from Aborted, Misery Index, and even their label-mates and modern death metal stalwarts The Black Dahlia Murder can be felt throughout the instrumentation.
The vocals aren’t for the faint of heart. Theories vocalist Rick Powell really shines on Regression. He leaves his mark with torturous shrieks, and demonic growls. His vocals color the big chords to create a helpless, almost desperate atmosphere that makes this band so noteworthy.
Even without checking, the production of Regression screams Scott Hull, with his trademark style of gritty tones and old-school mixes. That doesn’t take away from the brutal aggression that isn’t in any short supply here. Theories are a force to be reckoned with. Do not expect any sort of release from the pummeling you will be in for while listening to Regression!
Favorite tracks: Cycles of Decay, First Worlds Last Breath