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Kryptograf – Kryptograf Award winner

by Mike McMahan at 22 May 2020, 9:28 PM

Hailing from Vestland, Norway, KRYPTOGRAF is a four-piece band with an ear and musical feel dedicated to the heavier bands from the late sixties/early seventies era. Their influences include such vaulted names as BLACK SABBATH, PENTAGRAM, WITCHCRAFT, and MOTORPSYCHO, and their sound certainly draws from all of the above. They seem to have some Progressive leanings in their presentation, as well, which I am automatically and unapologetically drawn to.

The band has been fairly cryptic with this release; to the point where they only released one song for the promo pack I received for the review. Since then, they have released a second. These are the only two songs I have heard. They are certainly what was promised.

The Veil,” which will serve as the album’s opening track, starts with some very heavy bass licks leading into a tight, almost Native American inspired rhythm through the first verse. The song is definitely an old school throwback in its delivery, with a fuzzy tube amp sound on the guitars and bass and syncopated percussion throughout the first two minutes. Around the two minute and twenty second mark, the song breaks free, and the heaviness presides over the last minute. Energetic and well- orchestrated as it is, it is almost over too quickly; leaving me with an incomplete feeling.

Crimson Horizon,” the fourth on the album and second single released just earlier this week, is truly a better cut. The song begins with some synth-type instrumentation that pours full on into an absolutely slamming intro. There is notable BLACK SABBATH influence all over the song, but leanings toward a more modern feel as well. There are segments here that put me in mind of both WHITE ZOMBIE and SOUNDGARDEN’s “Badmotorfinger” album. Coming in at a bit over five minutes, the track feels more complete, and covers a lot of ground within.

Based off what I have heard, these four Norwegian souls feel like the real thing. I look forward to hearing the remainder of this record.

Songwriting: 9
Musicianship: 10
Memorability: 9
Production: 9

4 Star Rating

1. The Veil
2. Omen
3. Seven
4. Crimson Horizon
5. Sleeper
6. Ocean
7. New Colossus
8. Infinite
Vegard Strand – Guitar/Vocals
Odd Eriend Mikkelson – Guitar/Vocals
Eirik Arntsen – Drums/Vocals
Elvin Standal Moen – Bass
Record Label: Apollon Records


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