November 14, 2007


Release date: OUT (August 16th, 2004)


…Cursed Evolution
Altered Destinies
Forgotten Land of Ice
Clandestine Elements
In Twilight’s Grace
Expedition to Abnormalia
Satyr Like Face
Forsaken Descension

Review ::

It’s been almost six years since Bangalore based Kryptos got together and strived hard to create original, thought provoking music. The realization of putting there well-worked material on an album comes true with ‘Spiral Ascent’. The ten-track nerve wrecking effort that’s worth a wait by the quartet that outspokenly defines their music as ‘heavy metal with a difference’. However, my thoughts will educate you further on what they actually sound like (maybe a little more than that above mentioned phrase).

Kryptos, balance an old school thrash approach with a blend of dark background symphony, which is quite an improvisation. The riff structures have progressive touches that keep unfolding with each passing interlude. And, this enhanced musical outcome, gives a penetrating narrative effect, even after the lyrics fade away. Ganesh’s (Vocals/bass) throat pierces its way out of your amps, holding a strong thrash inclined intermediate pitch, moreover the bass thumping by him is also very clear. Therefore he stands tall for sure as a frontman. Drumming, by Ryan is not that standard supersonic, instead its technically unique, precision oriented and effectively lasting. The rotations, triplets, blast beats, and cymbal stirring all speak volumes once you give ‘Spiral Ascent’ a spin. Undoubtedly, he provides cushion to what the band aspires to construct.

Obviously there is closeness to medieval kreator and early Coroner killing (occasional) approach when it comes to the pace upkeep on the album, however it moves a step further with its tit-bits like chorus on ‘Forsaken’ (track icon_cool.gif, plucking intro on ‘Descension’ (track9), or solos on ‘Forgotten land of ice’ (track3) and ‘Expedition to abnormalia’ (track6). Themes of their songs revolve around an individual’s frustration with the world, gradually developing into sickness, that later demand solace. Rest of them is somewhat philosophically inclined towards things around us.
Concluding, I feel extremely proud reviewing the album, because what you hear is flat out KRYPTOS! Not any slave Indian band, which might usually fail to come out of its influence’s closet.

Old school thrash, guitar harmonizes, fast solos, intermittent background keyboards, authority soaked vocals, amazing drum playing, chilling lyrics, and not to forget the cover art by my none other than Niklas Sundin (Dark Tranquility). I think we have a lethal package here.

For Orders ::

Local Orders

If you’d like to order a copy of the album, please use the following form or send us an email at:

International Customers

Spiral Ascent now available on OSM Records

Other Distributors

Please visit Bloodbucket Productions (Canada) or BEOWOLF Productions / THE OMEGA: End Records Mail-Order / Cursed Productions (USA) to purchase your copy. If you would like to order a bulk of CDs (more than 3-4) for distro purposes (Europe/Australia/Japan), get in touch with the band directly, and we’ll give you a good deal!



November 14, 2007

Review ::

I was highly apprehensive when I picked up this, the debut offering from the Bombay-based black metal band, Fate (Roshan-Vox, bass; Nitin-Guitars; Hitesh-Drums). Black Metal has become more “happening” now and the band also had history of death metal, so I was pretty worried about the final outcome. Thankfully I was not disappointed. First of all, the CD packaging itself looks pro. The dull light, as if flickering on the walls of a cave, has an aura of grimness around it. The best part of the packaging was the black and white photos of the band on the backside below the dark and gloomy artwork and song-list. It really brings in an old-school feel. The production is also pretty good. Intune has done a good job on this. The album contains 5 songs and is approximately 28 minutes long. The music is dark and has no frills attached. No chick vox, no keyboards, no atmospheric embellishments, just brutal, dark, in-your face. The first song “Deathless” is about attitude and ability to persist, says the sleeve. The song is fast and begins on a great screaming note. There are also deep growls (a bit deathmetal-ish) but then the wailing takes over. There is good double-bass going on as well. The second song “Golden Leaf” has a Slayer-influenced intro. It is mid-paced and impressive. The third song, “Lead us to darkness” is arguably the darkest song in the album. The tempo is very slow but the vocals are so intense you can almost feel the pain in the wailing. Even in the midst of the slow pace and the clean-tone plucking, drumming keeps up the aggression. The fourth song, “Nittilai” is in stark contrast to the previous song, in that it is too “happy” and not the dark/ grim kind. In fact, it could very well be a song of a thrash metal band. Different, definitely not black. Unfortunately, towards the end, things become too sloppy. The last song “Whispering Death” is very slow, and is “doom” than black. The most impressive part of the band was the vocalist. He’s really done that “black-metal”ish high-pitch wailing and done it darn well too. The drummer is also rock-solid and brings in his double-bass slamming quite a few times. (Being a fan of the old-school style, I’d have preferred to have a more of blast beats, though). The problem with the guitaring (and I’m not talking about skill or finesse here) was that the “true” black feel was not communicated, in all probability, due to the lack proper equipment. However, inspite of all the pitfalls, the music is definitely dark and foreboding. Overall, the album is a decent effort. What the band needs to do is bring in more “blackness”, avoid the “doom” path and focus on what they do better and what sounds better – the fast, wild, violent songs.

Those interested in getting the album can contact ::, or

Demonic Resurrection – Frozen Portrait
Having heard the live version before this, I have to say that I am extremely disappointed with this studio version. The sound is absolutely power metallish, something that was not at all apparent when I heard them live. Sahil’s vocals also sound very strange on this track, for some reason he has decided to replace the growls in the live versions with attempted shrieks, something that has clearly not worked. Music wise, in terms of originality they have done a good job, although I would say that the use of keys seems a little unnecessary at times. They can surely make more judicious use of the keys in their self-compos.

Acrid Semblance – Burning the Ashes
This is one band I have followed very carefully since their “Soul Corrosion” release a couple of years back. Burning the Ashes is a well-structured song, again very reminiscent of most COB songs especially due to the use of the keys, which have been used very well. Like their earlier tracks, this track also has extensive and well-composed leads that add a very nice melodic touch to it. The recording is quite weak on this cd though, which makes it a little difficult to hear Anubhav’s vocals.

Exhumation – Among the Dead
I first heard this track on the web earlier this year and developed an immediate liking for the same. Frankly speaking, for a new listener it’s impossible to say that this is an Indian band!! The sound is absolutely awesome, the guitars have that perfect death metal tone, and Aditya’s vocals are a perfect match to the music. Yash too is impressive on the drums. Recording has been absolutely immaculate as well. They have a nice horror movie intro as well!!

IIIrd Sovereign – Face of Despair
These guys from Mizoram impressed many at Resurrection – Mumbai. I find their music a lot in the veins of Carcass. Guitars are not as heavy as one would expect from a death metal band, but they have used it very well nevertheless with the drums and Mala’s powerful vocals. Reuben is very tight on the drums on this track. Having heard these guys live, I can say that Mala is a very versatile vocalist and is able to modulate his voice very well. Overall an impressive performance by this band, would have been even better had the recording been upto the mark.

MyndSnare – Layers of Hypocrisy, Temporal Movements (Live)
I find each MyndSnare track unique in a lot of ways. This track was earlier released as a part of their demo. I love the intro to this track, from which both KP and Yasmin really pick up the speed very well. Overall the song structure is quite good, and KP’s vocals sound impressive on this track. The drums are equally up to the task, something we have come to expect from Yasmin!! Death fans will dig this track.

Shrapnel – Futile
This is the first time I heard Shrapnel. The music is very nice, especially the lead portions but unfortunately the vocals are a major let down. Everything else is very good on this track, they have composed the track very well. Guitars have a nice crunchy sound, something that I liked. They have certainly stuck to their claim of playing Melodic heavy metal, the music certainly is very melodic with impressive leads.
Towards the end, they have also tried to lend a doomy feel to the song, and have managed to do quite a good job at the same. However, Deepak Rao, the vocalist has tried to sing at a high scale throughout the song and has not succeeded at all in doing the same and at some stages has lagged behind the music.

Reptilian Death – Reptlian Death
The CD inlay says that Reptilian Death plays “Humor” metal. Frankly speaking it’s nothing more!! Think of what happens if you try and play an Aerosmith track and have the Kataklysm drummer playing the drums!! The drum programming has simply ruined it all!! Seems to me that drum parts have just been cut n pasted without any thought whatsoever. There is absolutely no relation between the music and the drums. Double bass has been used as fill ins and sounds pathetic. Is Sahil just having fun??

Narsil – Death Comprehendez
Narsil, a side project of Acrid semblance, redefines black-death sound. A dark haunting intro paves way, for an extremely aggressive zyklon styled riffing. Anubhav (AS) gels the impact with captivating high pitched elongated shrieky vocal chords (something close to Emperor’s style). Down and up shifting of speed gears are wonderfully crafted, pinch harmonics and guitar duo crunch enhances the technical expertise the band showcases. Ample darkness throng’s you around when band is slowing down things and while exiting. This is close to a natural black experience, no keyboard symphonies, no unnecessary chorus, and no guest vocal appearances. Quite genuine! Surprising three piece

Black Hole Theory – God Fears Me
Brutal vocals but sound very artificial. The music is very bland as well, the same riffs have been replicated over and over again. There is a clear lack of innovation in this track and this has made this track very monotonous. Drums seem to have been programmed, and hence sound a little artificial as well. Guitars also lack that punch.

Demonstealer – Blood Vengeance
The worst track on this compilation, closely followed by its “Humor” metal counterpart.
Just don’t understand why Sahil has to change his singing style and/or get other guys to sing for him!! This track sounds terribly immature, can’t figure out what they have tried to achieve.

Grey – Severed Dreams
Delhi based guitarist Anupam’s solo project grey, play traditional black metal. Remaining extremely near to their influences Immortal and burzum, The vocal difference is noticeable as they are shabby, grey, lung blasting and non-routine. Though defining themselves as atmospheric seems too clichéd. However the interlude segment that takes the song to the final phase tries to live up the best with their self-proclamation as atmospheric black. The drumming on the song is programmed but is well sought out. All an all it produces a bruising, underground feel! Nice experimentation!

Exhumation – The Awakening
This is an instrumental by the band. Very impressive work, and reminds me of old Cannibal Corpse (Tomb of the Mutilated). Guitars and drums blend beautifully to create that nice old school death metal touch to it.

Demonic Resurrection – A Darkness Descends
Just as frozen portrait this was a big let down. The live version was much better. I dunno who’s done the intro vocals, but they are quite bad. They have tried to get that high-pitched voice effect, something that has not worked. The vocals are still better on this track, as Sahil has stuck to the conventional growls this time around. The keys have been used well, creating a nice effect, indicative of the band’s influences like Dimmu Borgir. One reason for the live version being so much better than this studio version might be coz of JP’s presence. The programmed drums have not had the same effect here. Originality wise, I would rate this track highly.

Kryptos – Forgotten Land of Ice, Altered Destinies (Live)
The Bangalore based outfit actually obliges the cd, as they are the most mature, professional and original band on the compilation. They appear with ‘forgotten land of ice’ and ‘altered destinies’ (live) taken from their debut album ‘spiral ascent’. The band proves with both the songs that they are miles ahead of the crop. Others will have to do a lot of catching up to actually create a unique sound and feel. Their old school thrash approach with a blend of dark background symphony is quite an improvisation. Ganesh’s throat pierces your eardrums throughout the song spinning. And, thankfully we have Ryan playing on both the songs, which is a relief considering the number of bands using drum programming on the album. And as the band says ‘its heavy metal with a twist’. Listen and enjoy!


November 14, 2007

Album Name :: Desert Of Souls

List of Tracks

1. Final Verdict
2. Liar To Follow
3. Soul In Disgrace
4. Deathly Hymn
5. Caught In A Crossfire
6. Serpent Of Sorrow
7. Say You Will
8. Last Breath

Year : 2005
Record Label : Times Music
Producer : Times Music
Mixed & Mastered : Dr.Maruth

Genre :: Death/Thrash Metal

Rating :: 8/10

Band Contacts :

Review ::

Watching Sledge live for the very first time was an experience of its kind; it happened at IIT-D Blitzkrieg prelims a couple of years ago. The thing that struck me most about the band was the their shear heaviness exhaled with raw head moving trip. Moreover, sledge’s electric performances haven’t been limited only to their hometown Hyderabad or Delhi gigs, the receptiveness has always been phenomenal throughout India.

Meanwhile, all this has brought them a burdening tag of ‘too much of a Sepultura cover band.’ Truly that is one band they cover inch perfect. In order to give an answer to such criticism sledge unveils ‘Desert of souls’ (the much awaited debut, which is part of the contract with times music after the acclaimed win at Castrol garage rock competition). Hence, the uncovering act for ‘Desert of souls’ unfolds. Cover art depicting a grave land on a red background looks refreshing. Opening up, flipping through the 2-page inlay I am utterly disappointed, because, frankly I wasn’t expecting such bad production in terms of layout etc from a label like Times music. It’s got 8 tracks that run a little over 35mins. What it offers is traditional heavy metal having some occasional plucking and leads thrown in. Surprisingly there’s a negligible Sepultura overtures on the music. Thankfully, this was THE aspect they had to work on and they have reasonably done well in the department. Avinash (V)’s throat is consistently distorted, energized and merciless across the record. References to Max might be present, but overall range and emotion seems much advanced in comparison to what we have seen from the band all these years. On the other hand, guitar sound is a let down as it’s very feeble, undoubtedly it could have certainly increased the substance if it had been a bit more thick. Agonizingly, it almost fells like an extension to the ones used by glam bands of the 80’s. Song structuring is orthodox, apparently influenced with 80-90’s heavy metal era. A dazzling lead guitar presence is felt, whenever Shadrach (LG) maneuvers his fingers through those frets. He’s flamboyant and yet composed with his instrument. However, over plucking on the bulk of the record sounds a bit unnecessary at times.

Regarding drumming, I am in two minds whether they are using a drum machine or is Suman (drums) playing them? Whatever be the case, inputs are signficant, especially a quality double base work here and there. To add, the thumping base drum reminds of the effects from ‘And justice for all’ record (by the legendary band). But do not even dare comparing the style. All said and done, drums (sound and playing) are always a mandatory for heaviness, and sledge handles this well. Track6 ‘Serpent of sorrow’, track4 ‘Deathly hymn’ and signature original ‘Caught in a crossfire’ stand out for sturdiness, balance, composure and consistency. While these have charmers, they have a couple of losers in the form of ‘Say you will’ (track7) and ‘liar to follow’ (track 2) reason being, exact musical derivation from most heroes of their genre.

Pick the album; because the heaviness is intact, traditional HM character is plenty and its SLEDGE! And for those who are not into conventional metal, you have your say.


November 14, 2007



THE DEMONSTEALER-Vocals & guitar




TOTAL TIME: 58.08mins

LABEL NAME: Demonstealer records


RATING : 7 /10

Signs of maturity are indeed evident considering all aspects of this Demonic Resurrection release. I heard DR 5 years ago, when they released their debut-’DEMONSTEALER’; it was a weak outing, comparing it to bands playing symphonic black metal here in Asia. All that ‘Demonstealer’ could do for young Sahil (vocals/guitar) was, provide an immense confidence that extreme bands can record and sell records in this part of the world. Let me not waste precious web space for my site by getting too much into technical aspects of that album. Mind you, this is reworked DR in terms of shape, formation, style, direction and production.
I can sense the high tides about to hit seashores of mumbai, as soon as track 1 ‘Prelude to darkness’ concludes. ‘Dreams of the dead ‘provides a gut-busting opening; first thing worth noticing was profound drumming; that strengthens audibleness of ‘a darkness descends’ as a whole. I am specially mentioning this because, it has always been my complaint with extreme Indian bands that have completely disappointed me in drum mixing department. Total credit to DR’s sound engineers for a perfect mix. Although, I still have doubts regarding presence of live drums on the album?! No, offense to JP’s abilities to play blast beats/hyper blast beats (whosoever has seen him live, would agree with me!).
DR sound reminds me of ‘Prometheus’ era by the mighty Emperor to an extent. However, this is also too big a statement, moving parallel, may be the right way to describe it. With that album Emperor had broken a shell of a typical scandinavian sound, by infusing newer progressive elements and powerish riffs and vocal turnarounds. DR show similar aspirations on this album. But, their success rate quotient will be answered best by review conclusion. So better not jump onto it. The interludes and background keyboards are best wedged on ‘dreams of the dead’ (track2), ‘frozen potrait’ (track10) and ‘spirit of the mystic mountain’ (track 6). Although I feel they have gone a little over board with keyboard use. I personally had wanted it to be less loud. Moreover the choruses with all the guest backups are a little off tune and turnout to be an unhealthy mismatch, these are sadly illustrated on ‘Apocalyptic dawn’ (track3). Even the biggest symphonic black metal heroes ‘Dimmu borgir’ would jerk away from such experiments, and keep it as much unadulterated. Nevertheless, it’s the bands vision of construction; unmatched top-notch production gives it a one above. But this isn’t a saving grace for matters look a little confused; it appears patched by different genres.
Pick it to believe me. Hard work has surely paid-off, but not just.


November 14, 2007


Genre :: Death Metal(Vedic)

Rating :: 8/10

Band Contacts ::


Conceptual death metal can be extremely challenging as a task, i.e. to play as a band and to feel as a listener. The band I am reviewing has never belonged to this genre. Though all 3 albums (Om, The Aryan crusade and kurukshetra) by Vedic metallers Rudra are primarily theme ridden, but were never concept based in total. Then why talk all this? News is, their latest offering BRAHMAVIDYA PRIMORDIAL 1 primarily showcases a concept approach. Gauging its effective charm will be certainly tedious!

I believe the whole process started with their last album itself, Kurukshetra (the name of the place where ancient battle of Maharbartha took place) which marked a perfect prelude to what the band has evolved into, however it wasn’t too uni-directed and similar in terms of music, but was certainly how a predecessor to the current album should have been. BRAHMAVIDYA has ten songs, running close to forty-six minutes (approx), each of these inspired by Principal Upanishads (are metaphysical texts of the Vedic traditions, out of hundred Upanishads, ten are popular for teaching brahmavidya-knowledge of Brahma-The god of creation according to Hindu mythology). Moving on from concept to music, its authentic, marrow chilling, whipping death metal fused incredibly over scriptural chants and usage of Indian instruments like dholki and tabla. (All those of you who are well versed with Rudra’s previous albums already anticipate all that).
Drums hurricane from start to finish, remaining the chief pace driver, it’s almost rampaging enough to beat the skins out of the stands. Also, bother to put a careful ear into Shiva’s (drums) rolls, you are sure to conclude his presence is indispensable for Rudra Moreover, drum sound replicates one heard on recent Vader albums (Blood, The beast). Variation and technicality gets controlled superbly courtesy all this. Twin guitars; intoxicate your ears, finely tuned closer to likes of Vomitory and Vader. Leads are occasionally ultra fast, sure to deceive your imagination on few occasions, when it comes to flair and impact they provide. Pace average on the record, exceeds a little over flat –out brutal DM.Kathir’s vocals are as usual stellar, which makes the whole concept stand out, beaten-up, dry, creating a torturous thrash range might be other appropriate words to describe it. Experimentation is witnessed best on ‘Ageless consciousness, I am’ (track 6), which mingles twisted riffs over dholki during intro, classical vocals on ‘Shovoham’ (track 9) by Aishwariyah S, which is a plannno hymn, and kathir’s reverberating throat on key phrase on ‘Aham bramhasmi’ (track icon_cool.gif.

Therefore, those of who missed out on classical rudra elements-shlokas, demented acoustics, force and a ripping effect, on the last release will not be disappointed as you get all of it on BRAHMAVIDYA.My picks are ‘Twilight of quality’ (track 1), ‘The pathless path to knowable unknown’ (track 3) and ‘Aham bramhasmi’ (track icon_cool.gif for urgency, progression and exploding effect respectively. A word of caution though- Go through the conceptual preface and lyrics of the album if you really want to freak out on it. It took me only couple of spins to compose this review, and I have no clue how many spins will it take before I get tired to get it out my CD player. And, for all you rudra fans there’s a limited edition digipak includes a bonus death metal compilation disc featuring Narasimha, Rough cast, Angel of sin, Suicide solution.etc.

The overall blend is an epic in construction. Grab it!

3rd Sovereign (Mizoram)

November 14, 2007

BAND NAME: 3rd Sovereign

1. Pathetic Ignorance
2. Necrophobia
3. Destined To Suffer
4. Dying Sun
5. Gathering Of Lies
6. Life Of Mortal
7. Victimized
8. Suicidal Corpse
9. Funeral Rites

ALBUM NAME: Horrified visions.




TOTAL TIME: 12mins(approx)
LABEL NAME: Self-release
RATING – 9.5 /10

I still remember the spring-winter season of year 2002-2003,when an unknown entity from Mizoram came, played and conquered North India rock festivals with their stupendous style and musical prowess. The band talked about here is 3rd Sovereign and the highlighted competitions were Delhi College of Engg and BITS Pilani Whosoever, has seen them in that era (I being one of the lucky few), or at the recently concluded Resurrection 5 festival in Mumbai would agree that they discharge-energy with unmatched stamina and eagerness to stretch to limits. 3rd sovereign have come a long way, evolving into an 8-legged juggernaut, which specializes into an art called DEATH METAL. However, they always lacked one essential ingredient in each of their performances-ORIGINALS! ‘Face of despair’ was the only saving grace original (released earlier on ‘Resurrection’ compilation last year) that used to make a cut to their set, which used to be filled with covers of Cannibal corpse, Carcass and Death. But this E.P having 4 new songs swings tide towards their shores making them one of my most respected bands under extreme Indian scene. ‘Destined to suffer’ EP opener has a very meaty distorted riff, riding on a furious fret work. A minute into the song tempo change occurs which reverts backwards-forwards. This immediately reminds about clear ‘Decapitated’ influence. Mala’s vocals are dry, mixing- matching Sauron (decapitated)-Benton (post-‘Serpents of the light’ era), drums are thumping, delivered with typical signature Reuben blasts which is refreshingly thick in production, unlike other Indian bands. Title track ‘Horrified visions’strats with a relatively slower pace, that picks from the intermediate section and develops into a cyclonic shape that gathers around you. Mala stands firm here alongside pinch harmonics by ‘Anshuman’ (G) during the penultimate shell, leaning into never ending kind of larynx growl-Butchers you away. (Heard it several times before commenting).’Everlasting burn’ is my favorite among the lot built up on a haunting intro moving towards a gentle bass tapping, that develops into a straight riff, which eventually expands into a hurricane effect when complimented by double bass, and after about a minute before unfolding of groove part, guitar churns with Reuben’s consistent snare beating, this! is sure to take toil on any ones neck. Then again after another minute and a half it’s back with a punch. May be I am stressing too much on it, but believe me it can put the best bands in business to shame. Another high point is band keeps unnecessary ‘leads’ out, that would have been baffling and obnoxious. ‘Suicidal corpse’ seems inspired by structures of CC’s last outing ‘Wretched spawn’. It’s got an immense display of powerful, hatefilled streamline growl execution, simultaneously enriched in a pain soaked scary note. By this time, you must have guessed what my verdict is going to be like. Therefore listen to the song to understand better.
Hence, ‘Horrified visions’ is brutal, bone wrecking technical death metal played with enthusiasm and self-belief.