Crypt of Kerberos

World of Myths

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Sweden was positively teeming with death metal bands during the early 1990s. It was a golden era that saw the Scandinavian country producing more internationally renowned heavy metal bands (Entombed, At the Gates, In Flames, Unleashed, etc.) than ever before, or again -- and that's saying something given the country's consistently strong contributions to the genre. However, such a rich bounty of talent emerged from a much larger pool that was just as rife with unfulfilled promise, naturally, and it is under this particular category that Crypt of Kerberos has unfortunately been filed over the years. To be sure, the group's lone album, 1993's ambitious World of Myths, featured many of the same Swedish death metal hallmarks that other acts parlayed into success -- not least of which the unmistakably coarse and rattling "Sunlight Studios sound"; but Crypt of Kerberos also experimented with more unusual musical ingredients that wound up relegating them to the scene's more progressive, outlying frontier. And we're not just talking about the band's unfiltered use of synthesizers, exceptionally diverse collection of riffs, and almost haphazardly adventurous tempo changes (maximized on standouts like "Sleeping God," the title track), but larger surprises like the flamenco guitar passage dropped into opener "Cyclone of Insanity" or the clean vocals interjected amid the customary Cookie Monster growls into "The Canticle" -- a widespread trick of the trade today that was radically ahead of its time back then. In fact, you'd be hard pressed to find another S.D.M. band of the period that was willing to push the style's creative envelope this far; only Dan Swano's highly acclaimed Edge of Sanity comes to mind, and even they had yet to dive off the cliff of experimentation, alongside Opeth, Tiamat, and others. Perhaps this is why Crypt of Kerberos proved too audacious for most fans to get their heads around, and one could argue that a little more discipline instead of calculated chaos may have swung these songs from intriguing to infectious (never a bad thing, even in extreme metal) and helped attract a broader audience. Alas, that was not to be, and the musicians disbanded shortly after the album's release, leaving only this single, imperfect, but compelling gem in their wake. [Nearly 20 years after its initial release through the Adipocere label, World of Myths was remastered and reissued by Pulverised Records, augmented with rare demos and liner notes penned by drummer Mattias Borgh.]