A few weeks ago, I was lucky enough to catch up with Nihal Anand and Greg Tomaszewicz ahead of the release of The Regency House Project’s self-titled debut EP. After speaking to the pair of them, it’s safe to say I had my appetite whetted profusely at the prospect of wrapping my ears around it, and after doing so, it’s equally safe to say that it’s quite simply a sublime composition, and an emphatic hybrid of progressive math-rock.
The Regency House Project is an EP that is absolutely sonically complete, despite being deciphered into just 4 tracks. Instruments spar with each other in conflicting time signatures, rhythm sections are tamed like dragons threatening to break loose and wreak havoc, and profound soundscapes offer themselves open to all kinds of interpretations. Anand’s math-rock background is thrown into an enticing melting pot along with Tomaszewicz’s crushing riffs, and the result is an unlikely but tantalising marriage of influences, and a thoroughly unique blueprint.
Bookend track Deep Sea throws you headfirst into the fathomless depths of TRHP’s sounsdscapes, with the climate distorting under a mystic profundity. A dangerously lethargic bassline dances out of step with a twisted guitar lick, luring you into a false sense of security before the brutality of Tomaszewicz’s stoner-rock side detonates without warning. Direction changes are thoroughly unpredictable, and the efficient and suitably subtle uses of instruments make for a HD textured soundscape. You’re spiralled further into the depths of TRHP blueprint with Ivanovka; a sauntering descent into the unknown that houses distressed guitars that build an uncanny sense of foreboding. This is progressive-rock music that operates from outside the typically perverted sphere of prog, where instruments are deployed with utmost technical brilliance and unwavering control.
The first few bars of Room would not be out of place on Hail To The Thief, before guitars lose themselves once again amongst an unchartered wilderness. The stoner-rock side threatens to explode again, with dooming chord changes, and more distressed guitars fighting to escape their shackles. There are some unflappable bridges of guitar work here too, and the title of the track is perhaps indicative of the freedom THRP operated under when composing these tracks. The destructive detonation that was threatened midway through Room comes to fruition to close out this particular chapter, before an alt-J-esque, hypnotic, circular riff brings final track Window into the fore. The track advances, gathering momentum all the way, before another heavy outro closes the EP.
The Regency House Project is an EP that metamorphosizes seamlessly, with alarming changes in direction, meticulously established soundscapes and a felicitous flow that encapsulates a listener. TRHP’s refined science of balancing loud and quiet is a remarkably distinguished formula, and the EP is an impeccable marriage of two outstanding musicians with contrasting influences, creating provoking atmospheres that are impossible to pigeonhole. The Regency House Project is undoubtedly an alluring exhibit of progressive-rock, and an innovative venture into seldom-plumbed depths.
You can download the EP from TRHP’s Bandcamp page here!