Hailing from Bangalore, India, and active since 1998 KRYPTOS was a band I knew nothing of until 2016. And even then I never got to see/hear what they were all about. As luck would have it, a friend’s review of their new album Afterburner (out now, AFM Records) made me say to myself, “Self…didn’t you get this one, too?” And I answered myself, “Why yes I did. Shall we have a listen?” I do enjoy a good conversation, even when it’s in my own head. As soon as I hit PLAY the roar of the title track smacked me dead in the face. These guys are a powerful blend of Old School Heavy Metal with a Thrash/Speed Metal twist. Ummm…you had me at “Hello.”
“Cold Blood” totally reminded me of mid-80’s JUDAS PRIEST in all the good ways, and the riffs on this one are stone cold stunners, as is the guitar solo that comes in halfway through. The riff machine is fired up once more for “Dead of night.’ I swear these tunes would sound right at home coming off my turntable in my old room back in 1986. It just so happens that they are also quite comfortable and fresh-sounding here in 2019. Vocalist/rhythm guitarist Nolan Lewis has enough of a nasty edge when he sings to give the music even more of a bite. Not sure what’s going on behind the guitar solo but it has a very sinister tone, and I love it.
One I was instantly drawn to was “Red Dawn.” It’s got this marching in the streets vibe to it, like two opposing forces getting ready to fight, and I just love that. And if you’re looking for a song to fire up in your Camaro and cruise the local drag then might I suggest “On the Run”? Next up is “Crimson Queen” and to be honest this one just didn’t hit me like the others. It’s okay, but nothing more. And “Mach Speed Running’ could use a little more get up and go, quite frankly. But those are minor blemishes because closer “Into the Wind” was another favorite from jump. Starting one way, then changing lanes, this one sucked me right in.
So at the end of the day my first taste of KRYPTOS proved to be rather delicious, and you can rest assured I’ll be going through the back catalog as soon as I can. Does Afterburner reinvent the wheel or break new ground? No. But is it a highly enjoyable, old school riff-laden affair that will have heads banging? That’s a resounding “YIS!!” Thanks to Matt over at Dead Rhetoric for turning me onto these guys (read his review HERE). The record’s available everywhere so go grab it if you haven’t already, give it a shot, and find out for yourself. And whether you agree with me, or violently disagree, let me know in the comments below!
STANDOUT TRACKS: “Into the Wind”, “Cold Blood”, “Red Dawn”, “Afterburner”