September 4, 2019

2019 is already an epic doom metal revelation with new albums from both scene veterans Candlemass and new hopefuls Crypt Sermon. The latter, coming from Philadelphia, already made more than good impression with debut Out of the Garden, which came out in 2015. Four years of touring and fine-crafting their art have led us to The Ruins of Fading Light, which will be officially released on September 13th (yeah, you guessed it will be a Friday as well).

If you are not familiar with the music of Crypt Sermon, then the most obvious benchmark is definitely Sweden’s finest Candlemass, with all suspected trademarks – dark, brooding, crushingly heavy riffing, melodic and expressive vocals with just enough grit, and, great solos! The album includes seven longer songs, with 3 short, atmospheric interludes in-between. Perhaps, its best merit is the ability to bring epic doom metal screaming into the new millennium without sounding deliberately retro. Nothing is forced and not even a note is played with the intention to recreate a lost 80s classic.

“The Snake Handler”, for example, plays with subtle influences from prog and NWOBHM, which at times sound Trouble-esque, at others – totally unique. Listening to the first two minutes of “Beneath The Torchfire Glare”, just immediately draws a smile on your face. Sure, it is an epitome of epic doom and brings some oh-so-familiar clichés out of the bag, but when this is done with so much conviction and skill (the guitar solo at the 4-minute mark is pure bliss), it makes total sense.

Finally, I have to pay special attention to the fantastic artwork and overall package (merchandise included) – absolutely essential, beautiful stuff.

8,5/10

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