Krysthla: A War Of Souls And Desires

Former Gutworm members return to the death metal gateway

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Rising from the ashes of lauded UK death metallers Gutworm, Krysthla have the opportunity to start afresh with the help of vocalist Adi Mayes.

Incorporating Decapitated’s clinical onslaught and sinister edge with Adi’s mid-range bark makes A War Of Souls And Desires a perfect death metal gateway album.

Opener Minority Of One crackles with energy as an array of riffs and blastbeats fly, before the rhythmic stomp of Luminosity barges into view. The syncopated barrage of H+ and Caged Earth are deployed with lethal results, carrying along a devilish undercurrent. A variety of tones and a weighty groove help By Way Of Deception stand out from the rest of the modern metal pack, and as well as a pristine production job helping the music penetrate the cranium, the lyrical impact of An Ancient Hope is more than a match for the frenetic attack.

Though the plodding The Human Cipher falls short of the bar, debuts rarely come as assured.

Adam Brennan

Rugby, Sean Bean and power ballad superfan Adam has been writing for Hammer since 2007, and has a bad habit of constructing sentences longer than most Dream Theater songs. Can usually be found cowering at the back of gigs in Bristol and Cardiff. Bruce Dickinson once called him a 'sad bastard'.