In the Grasp of the Starving Dead EP

I feel a little bit sorry for Finland’s Cryptborn, even after having their debut EP re-released by Dark Descent Records (an honor considering the labels affinity for awesome old school death metal). The reason? Basically because their EP is released about the same time as EntrailsThe Tomb Awaits — much like the high quality indie movie released the same day as a new Transformers or Harry Potter film, it’s simply going to get missed and steamrolled.

But that’s why I’m here, right? Right.

Featuring members of Maveth, Cryptborn deliver 7 songs and 28 minutes of damn fine Stockholm-styled Swedish death metal, rather than anything resembling their Finnish lineage. And best of all, it’s very well done, culling much more from the primal demo stages of Carnage, Nihilist and early Grave, with a more raw and loose delivery and of course a simply killer mid-range buzz (was there a sudden discovery of a hidden cache of previously lost Boss HM-2 heavy metal pedals?)

After the introductory funeral march of “A Feast For the Grave”, “Gift of Rotten Flesh”  launches into a pure Nihilist styled-beat romp with a crawling mid section. The title track has the classic ringing bell sample amid its girthy, sloppy (in a good way) mid-section, and “A Nebulous Path”, has a fetid, reeking lope. Then “Rotten Gates of Heaven” delivers a more Autopsy-inspired influence in its second half. Admittedly the EP wanes a bit with the rest of the tracks being a bit samey, and reliant on the guitar tone to carry the songs, which, unfortunately does get washed out a bit in the blastbeats (“Perfect When You Die”). But, it doesn’t stop the EP from being very, very promising example of the genre.

I only have two niggling issues. First, is the underwhelming drum sound, especially the bass drum, though, maybe it’s an after effect of listening to the new Entrails…but with such an awesome guitar tone, the drums should not be this weak sounding. Second, if the band put as much effort into their songwriting as their guitar tone, they might be onto something very special come future releases.

[Visit the band's website]
Written by Erik T
September 23rd, 2011


  1. Commented by: GW

    Does this mean Entrails is the Transformers movie to Cryptborn’s awesome indie movie?

  2. Commented by: E Thomas

    Id say that was very accurate bud

  3. Commented by: Cynicgods

    More like Entrails is Evil Dead while Cryptborn is Basket Case. Get that Michael Bay abomination away from my death metal! :P

  4. Commented by: GW

    When i think Transformers i think SUX, so i was confused.
    Fucking Transformers!?


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