Encryptor - Cryptic Works (1999 - 2005) (Bombworks) 2005
1. "Internal Catastrophy"
This CD came in my mail as a bit of a surprise. Not only did I not know I was getting a copy, I didn't even know that Bombworks was releasing it. So what of it? Well, first I must say that Bombworks has been doing a good job over the last year of putting some very obscure Christian Metal demos and albums out on CD. Much praise for the Consecrator and Pale Horse releases ( and the forthcoming Seventh Angel live CD, that I was privy to hear in advance.) However, I really think there are some demos that are best left as demos. Such is the case of most of the material on "Cryptic Works." The reason I say this is not because the music here is band. Not at all, actually Felipe Diez III is a quite competent musician and songwriter. His aggressive, heavy death metal songs would probably totally annihilate if they had been recorded properly. Unfortunately, as the liner notes say, "limited time and budget didn't make for an excellent sound." This is certainly true. To really properly review an album I usually give it several listens, even if I don't like it on the first spin. I am always anxious to find something I like about a project. However, this one was a bit painful to listen to. At times I felt as though I was listening to a tirade of death metal drums solos and death vocals. The guitars were severely buried. Perhaps listening on my crappy Toyota car stereo isn't the best sound. I gave it a second spin through my Bose Speakers at home. Things didn't improve. You have to understand that I am not a person who is obsessed with perfect production either. I think that a raw recording can sometimes add to the appeal of a band. Mortification's first album was raw and thin, yet it was still listenable. Raven's early recordings were basically recorded live in the studio and were very raw, yet it worked for them. This goes beyond raw recording. Even is each instrument were recorded properly, the mix in many songs is so very uneven. Such a shame. I will note that the production from song to song isn't the same and things tended to improve as the CD went on. If Filipe ever gets the chance to record properly, much of this material will rule! Until then, this is a disc for those who need to own every Christian death metal band out there.