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A nice attempt but very lacking - 57%

Noktorn, May 14th, 2011

I'm not sure why the Indian metal scene is so weird. When Indian bands suck, they tend to REALLY suck to an enormous degree. They're usually not technically incompetent, poorly recorded, any of the typical hallmarks of shitty, amateurish music: they're just BAD, with riffs that don't make any sense, song structures that are at once repetitive and incoherent, and with a weird, permeating lack of enthusiasm. Kryptos isn't terrible like a lot of those bands are, but they do seem to carry a lot of the same, typical problems with Indian metal bands, albeit to a less severe degree. It's pretty curious how Kryptos has become one of the flagship bands of the Indian metal scene, because judging from this album, they have a long way to go before they get to that position in my eyes.

Kryptos plays a lightly proggy variety of trad metal, but actually a somewhat unique one simply because classic heavy metal bands aren't really an appropriate reference to the music here. There's no obvious tributes to Iron Maiden or Judas Priest anywhere- it's a much more modern spin on traditional metal than you typically hear, yet one sort of alienated from anything else in the scene. This is perhaps closest in feel to a more awkward Twisted Tower Dire, with its winding, narrative riffs with just a hint of thrashy energy to them. I appreciate the rhythmic variation of the riffs and the refusal to repeat typical metal tropes, but the fact is that the riffs themselves aren't really that good: they tend to be kind of generic and uninspired in melody, and this isn't helped by the cheesy cock rock solos that litter the album like candy wrappers along a highway. Of course, hearing these somewhat more aggressive and ambitious riffs with such a staunchly '70s guitar tone is a pretty odd experience- as is listening to the equally aggressive drums with a very '70s style of drum production, with overloud hi-hat and bass drum pushed way into the background.

A lot of the added aggression comes from the vocals, a half-sung, half-barked shout that wavers constantly between clean and harsh. While it's probably the only thing that feasibly fits the style, I can't help but think that a cleaner vocal performance would be welcome, and would add that little bit of additional melodic variation needed to make this a more solid release. Really though, like in that instance, this is an album that gets eroded by degrees: the production needs to be better, the songwriting needs to be a bit more challenging, and so on through nearly every element. It's not as though Kryptos are a bad or incompetent band; they're just playing it too safe when I really hear a hint of experimentalism and cleverness to their sound which should be drawn out more. Songs like 'Forgotten Land of Ice' are a good start, with its engaging power metal feel and catchy riffs, but there's not enough of that.

Kryptos has done a couple albums since this one which I'm actually somewhat interested to check out; maybe they worked out some of the kinks and made something I could more comfortably recommend. This one, though, is just average, and comes out even through its triumphs and tragedies alike. Those infatuated with modern spins on traditional metal styles could check this out, but anyone else can comfortably skip it.

Amazing traditional heavy metal - 85%

shantanupatni1991, January 31st, 2009

I bought this CD when I attended the Great Indian Rock concert in Delhi about 3 months back (By the way, this is the same concert in which we were lucky enough to get bands like Satyricon, Sahg & Freak Kitchen.) To be honest, I bought it just for the sake of supporting the scene and didn’t have the highest of expectations from it. Most of the bands originating from India are either wannabe death metal or just shamelessly metalcore, so I don’t blame myself. One thing I got to know after listening to it, was that it was neither!

It’s just amazing how they are able to infuse traditional heavy, thrash and a little doom without sounding idiotic or fake. What’s also amazing is how they are able to make songs based on power chords and not sound unoriginal, uncreative, monotonous or generic. Remember the last time you wished there were more albums with the classic feel? Well, here is one.

However, one major difference here is that the vocals are harsh. But not for one second will you feel they are trying too hard or just forcing it. The production too, surprisingly, is stellar; “surprisingly” because it was self produced, though later distributed by The End Records. And if that isn’t proof enough of their talent, their recent sign up with Old School Metal Records or the designing of this album’s artwork by Dark Tranquilly guitarist Niklas Sundin should convince you.

The few points I’m cutting here are because;

a) The title track doesn’t make any sense, it looks like it was added to the final release by mistake. It's all chaotic and exceedingly weird.

b) There are quite a few parts where they could have added solos, I mean, parts which just have the main riff being played again and again.

Brilliant Debut Effort... - 95%

cousin_eddie, May 20th, 2005

An amazing debut by one of India's pioneer metal bands...
I first came into contact with Kryptos, at one of the local metal-fests held last year, although I heard a lot about the band and their musical talent, I igonred them as yet another 'Iron Maiden' or 'Judas Priest' rip-offs, as things turned out I couldn't be more wrong!!! During their set, they played some electrifying songs off their new album, especially the crowd favorite 'Altered Destinies' (Easily the best song on the album)... the opening riffs were so addictive that I couldn't get the tune outta my head... I went ahead and brought the CD. What happened next is undescribable, with the exception of the title song and 'cursed evolution' (a really creepy song) the rest of the album was pure head-banging heavy metal... the latter being kind of a shitty something (can't even call it music), I dunno how it fits the album, that is the only reason the album falls short of perfection.
Believe me the rest of the album will not dissapoint you, if you listen to anything vaguely resembling metal, you will definitely love this...
All in all an amazing album, and recommended to all fans of this genre as well as people who love to listen to music from nascent bands...