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CRYPTED – Equilibrium

  • Review by: Madhav R

From the crop of young metal bands bursting into the scene comes Crypted. The 5 piece Chennai based technical death metal band recently released a 4 track EP titled ‘Equilibrium’, a concept album of sorts, dedicated to the Indian Lord of Destruction, Lord Shiva. Mixed and mastered by Siddharth Nair (Blind Image, Essence), the EP is short, clocking less than 20 minutes and yet, contains a spark that has the potential to burst into flames.

The carnatic lick infused intro ‘Det-PyrC’ is very different from the usual dark intros that most metal bands of today seem to prefer, although after about 1 minute, it starts sounding repetitive and stale. It extends on for less than a minute more before the title track Equilibrium takes off. This is the band at its best; the first 30 seconds are reminiscent of Chuck Schuldiner’s work on ‘Leprosy’  and the rest of the song (in fact, the rest of the album) draws a lot of influences from Decapitated, Slayer and technical death metal bands like Necrophagist. Vishnu Reddy’s drumming is quite impressive; Gene Hoglan would be proud of the influence he’s had on this young 18 year old. ‘Held By Chains’ is the quintessential technical death metal song and follows in the same vein as ‘Equilibrium’ before leading in to the last song, ‘Flesh Eater’. This track is the coup de grace on this short EP. Fast and heavy, delivering a crushing blow, it’s easy to see why this is always the crowd favourite. However, as the last strains of the track fade away, you ask yourself. “Did I just listen to Crypted or to an amalgamation of Slayer, Necropgahist and Death?”

So much for the music, now for the production. No Indian album review is complete without mention about the quality of the recordings and production. While Sid Nair has tried his best to infuse the inherent musical aggression the band has on to the recordings and bring out a raw, early death metal sound, the end result seems to fall short by a considerable distance. The drums and guitars sound extremely thin and harsh, and the low end is virtually non existent. While the vocalist sounds pretty capable of himself, most of his screams are drowned out by the rest of the instruments which is a shame, really.

In any case, it’s a decent attempt for an EP. The music sounds promising (although that might be because of the heavy musical influences) and I will be waiting for the full length.