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One of the toughest challenges facing any modern metal band is to stand apart from the homogenous masses and deliver a sound that offers something more than perfunctory ticking of boxes and trend-chasing mediocrity. With a sound that thrums and crackles with imagination and atmosphere, Karybdis have the substance to back up their technical skills. As showcased with breathtaking flair and finesse on their extraordinary debut album, From The Depths, this is crushing, forward-thinking heavy music that marries the savage riffing and percussive precision of death metal, groove metal and brutal hardcore to the epic sweep of ancient Greek myths and legends. A potent new hybrid driven by passion, power and the tireless pursuit of progress, From The Depths is as fresh and invigorating as any metal album in recent memory.
“We all have such different influences that we can’t be pinned down to a specific genre,” explains drummer Mitch McGugan. “The combination of all our ideas makes us unique. When we write we do it together and write what we want to hear. We never try to cater to a specific audience.”
Exemplified by a mesmerising genre-blending versatility and a devastating degree of sonic depth and muscle, songs like imperious album opener Minotaur and the monumental Demonstration exhibit an otherworldly quality that belies Karybdis’ burgeoning reputation as new metalcore figureheads. Completed by guitarists Pierre Dujardin and Harsha Dusari, bassist Jay Gladwin and recently-recruited frontman Rich O’Donnell, this international wrecking crew have evolved at a breathless pace since forming in 2008 and have struck upon a fizzing, ferocious inter-band chemistry that has led to a debut album that bulges with jaw-dropping dynamics and moments of exhilarating intensity. Named after a mythical sea creature that appears in Homer’s Odyssey, Karybdis are as ageless and epic as the ancient tales they tell on From The Depths.
“Karybdis created huge whirlpools from the depths of the ocean in order to engulf any passing sailors,” explains McGugan. “We want to exert that kind of power too. We wanted a link between the name of the band and album title, something that also represented the beginning of something new for us. The lyrics range from being about dreams and mythological creatures to notions of love, lust and grief. Rich is quite a recent addition to the band, but he really pulled out all the stops on this album, and surprised us all a few times during the recording process!”
The final piece of this compelling jigsaw slotted into place when Karybdis joined forces with legendary producer and sound wizard Russ Russell, recording From The Depths with the great man at Parlour Studios in Northamptonshire. Famed for his work with Napalm Death, Evile and many more, Russell has brought the band’s music to life like never before.
“Russ was fantastic to work with,” states McGugan. “He was patient and helpful with things we found difficult and a real taskmaster when he felt we weren't doing the best we could! We had a huge amount to cram into the time we had and he worked incredibly hard to bring our dream to fruition: an album that sounds exactly as we wanted it to.”
Leading UK metal into inspiring and uncharted territory, pushing boundaries and pursuing a brave and noble path into the unknown, Karybdis unleashed From The Depths in 2012, and are embarking on their own epic quest to spread the dark magic of their music to the four corners of the globe. The sound of metal’s past, present and future colliding in a shower of sparks, this band are constructing their own immortal mythology before our eyes and ears.
Prepare yourselves: a new legend is rising from the depths!