Theoria - Mantra
Label: Antiq Records
Reviewer: Rak Hiasat - 2013-06-19
Highlights: Inner Tempests, Theoria
Recently talking about the Syrian black metal scene, it's not that easy, especially when you know bands like Abidetherein, Blackspell, Dark Promise or Despair these bands who proved that the Syrian scene is still promising with the black touch to follow the international scene with our middle eastern one. In this review am going to review another great band: Theoria. Theoria project was founded by Crescent Moon's ( Syrian Doom/death band) members Ahmad and Besher back in 2012, and on May the 10th the band released their debut album "Mantra".
I was expecting something in the vein of other black bands in the Middle East, but this release really made musically high. Well it's not too far away from the style of other bands in the same field in mid-east region, but it's unique. Theoria plays a sort of atmospheric black metal with some ambient influences. The riffs are good and quite catchy and the band differs from most generic black metal, by the use of keys. The keys aren't used in any excessive fashion, but add a great deal of atmosphere. The vocals are quite oriented growls, which are quite deep and nice. Here I was talking about the first two tracks "Sons of Past's Decay" and "Inner Tempests" which featured Alex Poole from "Chaos Moon", "Esoterica" and many more.
"The Chime of Lifeless Matter", Theoria's third song, starts with an oriental raw black guitar riffing. A three-minutes-track, and fortunately intriguing enough to maintain interest. This atmospheric black metal song ends in magnificient melodic black riffs. The next ext song "Theoria" start with a fast melodic black riffing, including interesting drum-lines and vocals too, and it’s a pure melodic black metal song. The outro to this song is especially worthwhile, featuring the best of both Theoria's aggressive and atmospheric sides.
The listener is treated to an emotion-filled build up and release. Theoria's ability to go from a subtle melody played over atmospheric chords to pounding drums and distorted electric guitar in a matter of seconds, and make it sound completely natural, is astounding. "Narcissistic Veils" is an ambient song. Rather than mindlessly rasping over a few recycled tremolo riffs with a drum machine plodding away in the background, as some black metal bands choose to do, Theoria creates a musical journey. As usual for the band, the song does not conform to any preconceived conventions, and certainly does not depend on usual verse-chorus-formulas. Every song builds up and climaxes multiple times, doing it differently every time.
Just give yourself the trouble to listen to "Theoria", and you will not feel disappointed of this release. I can announce that with full confidence.