Crypts of Despair 
All Light Swallowed

“Oh, that’s nasty…”

I could probably end this review right here with that stellar Cleveland Brown quote and you’d basically know what you have. However, finishing early is just not in my vocabulary (ladies…).

Crypts of Despair have already released one album, but this is the first on Transcending Obscurity for this crew from the Lusitania. I don’t know how they’re from a sunken British ship, but okay (They’re not. It’s Lithuania).

Oh, so about the music. This is heavy, brutal blackened death metal, or whatever the vice versa is of such a statement. A cymbal crash gets the first track started on this monster. A blackened riff and blasting enters as the vocals at first are a really deep, unexpected bellow not unlike Incantation. Highs are utilized as well, but it’s more of a trade off between both vocal styles. This has a great guitar tone and production overall. It’s clear very quickly what you’re probably getting and it’s not bedroom death or black metal. I really dig the guitar tone.

The second track, “Anguished Exhale,” is more of the same… until it isn’t. Around the middle of the track, it segues into a heavy, slow crawl section, which sounds a lot like the previously mentioned Incantation. That doesn’t last for the entirety, though as they do go back into a much faster pace afterwards, but it does show these guys know a few tricks.

Quite possibly my favorite track is “The Great End,” which is track 6 of 9 (heh). It’s definitely an old school death metal beatdown, but those deep vocals carry a lot of weight during the blasting section. The production shines here, too as the crunch of the guitars can really be felt. The last section has a bit of a buried lead near the end, and even though it’s one of the longest tracks on display, it feels over slightly too soon.

The final track on here and the last one to mention, “Bleak View” certainly describes my world outlook. If you’re one of those “glass half full people” and have managed to stay that way throughout the last year or so, good for you, but fuck you also. I’m still convinced we’re all going to die (we are, just maybe not right this second). While this is the closer, it’s more of an “outro.” It’s barely over 3 minutes of foreboding tremolo picking and atmosphere.

9 songs in 38 minutes. Fast, heavy, and nasty. Overall, you’ve heard this before, but it’s on Transcending Obscurity, so you know it’s good. This is some heavy, brutal, well-played, well-produced death/black metal. You know mostly what you’re getting with that descriptor but let me assure you this has a little more going for it than your typical affair of the sort… and you should check it out now.

[Visit the band's website]
Written by J Mays
April 8th, 2021


  1. Commented by: F.Rini

    Great write up James. I loved their debut and this is excellent. The Great End is a killer song. Right you are!

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