Blast Rites #14: Thieves – Therapy Sessions Review

Some days you want some bloodsoaked goregrind grossness. Some days you want some rifftastic death / grind mash-up. Some days call for simpler measures: Some days you just want to smash things, or people, or an entire society.

And for days like those, I offer up this latest batch of crusty grind-smash tuneage from California’s Thieves, their fourth. Tar-coated guitar tones, chunky chord-based riffs, d-beats and blastbeats and all around carnage behind the kit, raw-throat wreckage on the mics… Sounds awesome, right?

Well, that’s because it is.

Release date: May 12, 2022 Label: Self-released.
Thieves trades in relatively straightforward punk-ish riffing, tight and punchy, thick and crushing, with drummer Jon bashing and blasting away beneath an array of indecipherable grunts and screams. Therapy Sessions is not exactly a groundbreaking take on the style, for sure, but I’m guessing that innovation is not really the point. Guessing this one’s just more about aggression, letting it loose on a world gone sideways, jabbing an upraised finger in the face of anyone and everyone who isn’t in on the trip.

From the tandem of the appropriately (if unimaginatively) titled “Intro” and the d-beat drive of “Toxica (Black Widow)”, Therapy Sessions is a primal-scream attack of fist-swinging fury, summed up in the staggering blast-beat kick of the title track. Relentless crush fuels “Total Disregard For Human Life,” the title of which likely sums up a good portion of Therapy Sessions’ inspiration. (The album title itself also sums up its intention as catharsis, I would imagine, although I’m extrapolating here, admittedly.) That bass and drum intro to “Black Skies,” the way it drops into that simple main riff, and then into the rollicking punk-grind beyond… *chef’s kiss* crusty, like the finest French bread, and groovy, like whatever you did that Bruce Campbell approves of. Short, sweet, to the incredibly angry point: Crust-grind goodness, all the way.


So here we are, world-hating catharsis in the form of fourteen minutes of crusty-as-hell grinding rage, that also happens to be the most intense, furious, and developed of all of Thieves’ releases thusfar. Perhaps the therapy in these Sessions worked, but selfishly, I hope it didn’t take for too long, maybe left enough anger in there to build on, let the hate flow through, keep the grinding coming.

But that’s for another day… For now, break out your spiked bat and your dirtiest Disrupt t-shirt. Time to smash.

Posted by Andrew Edmunds

Last Rites Co-Owner; Senior Editor; born in the cemetery, under the sign of the MOOOOOOON...

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