Rare as it is in this position, there are times when you get asked to cover/review something that is quite close to home, there’s the initial worry about not wanting to upset any of the respective parties, what if the album just isn’t up to scratch, or if it just doesn’t grab you. But all that has to be put aside, as do personal feelings, it’s an album review, pure and simple how you believe the product release stacks on it’s own merits.
Originally known as Souls the band changed their name to Theories Divide some six years ago and have produced a couple of EP’s over that period, showing a constant progression and a sound that has become fresher as they developed, but this is a massive step forward.
So to the heart of the matter, the brand new debut album from the Dublin Metalers, and it’s bloody excellent, what is it with Ireland at the moment, taking in to consideration the new long awaited Dead Label album and it just appears that the Bar is being raised a lot and we have a lot of really quality bands on the scene in 2016. Not the easiest of bands to catagorise, there are elements of Death and Thrash in their music, but it’s melodic and very catchy, both Leigh Ferguson and Gareth Quinn have done some excellent work on the guitars throughout, the riffs are crisp and catchy, the solos soaring and it all sounds awesome.
These days I can really take or leave Intro tracks, generally there doesn’t seem to be much point to them anymore, but this time out there’s something slightly haunting in the music and it works really well, running us into “In Vain” which is a perfect indicator of what we are going to get on this album, there’s a tonne of aggression in the vocal delivery, the riffs and at the same time there is a tonne of melody in the guitar sound, backing this up is the so solid rhythm section Garret Muldowney (Drums) and Cian Ó Riain (Bass), pounding drums as always when required and subtle when the occasion calls for it. Undoubtedly this is a very accomplished body of work and one of the highlights is the outstanding title track The Outcast it just shreds, rather than easing into it your attention is grabbed and held by the sheer power unleashed, this is approaching six minutes of absolute in your face Metal Mayhem.
Other highlights include the grinding, brooding “In Sight Of Betrayal”, “Demons” with vocals spat right in your face, and an almost 80’s sounding metal riff, and “Refuse This Life” which has a gentle lead in before dragging you kicking and screaming into the depths as with tracks all over the album the marriage between gut wrenching aggression in the vocals and melodic overtones in the music is spot on, that’s not to say that the music isn’t aggressive as hell too, but it just hooks you in. A brief mention of “Until We Meet Again” which is just do different to anything else on the album, it sounds like a deeply personal track, clean vocals and a much slower pace to everything else, but it looses nothing at all in the power emitted from the song, it’s an interesting piece.
This album is an absolute triumph from start to finish, there’s no doubt in my mind that this release will blow a lot of peoples minds, and will hopefully garner the band a lot of new fans far and wide. There are interesting and promising times ahead for this band and it’s going to be great to follow their journey, it’s rare enough that we get an opportunity to stand up and applaud a release by an Irish Metal band, so take a bow Theories Divide.
In Sight Of Betrayal
Not Like You
Refuse This Life
Until We Meet Again
The Outcast is available now! Just click on this link and order your copy today!
© OVERDRIVE 2016