Stygian Crypt is a Russian label that mostly releases Doom, Gothic, Death and Viking Metal albums. Scratching Soil is purely a Black Metal act and one, including myself, could only hope for more of the same to come out of the Crypt, especially knowing a lot of talented Folk/Pagan and Black Metal musicians hail from Russia.
On their third release, this duo has come up with a powerful piece of melodic/war Black Metal. I found the sound production very good; it enables the music to be really strong and in your ears, so to speak. Precise and catchy at times, the guitar work is very well executed, either in the riffing, melodic tremolo picking or those cool distorted dark arpeggios. Bass lines beef up the riffs and the leads and aggressive drumming complete the instrumentation used here. No such things as fancy electronics, not even a keyboard note to be heard on this album. Instead, and this is on almost every songs, war samplings from tanks to machine guns and even a war siren announce the hostilities. Off both musicians, I would believe the vocals are done by the male artist but, I´ve heard in the past some female vocalists that could produce rasps and growls as well as guys so...This music is powerful, catchy in the riffing and melancholic along the lines.
Off the eight tracks, many are worth mentioning especially these: "Time to Cut the Tails Off (separation preview)", "The Dancing One", "Cordis et Caellum Dissectio" and "The Cutting Word." The last two are my overall favorite due in part to the tasty juicy riffs.
4/5 Pagan Shadow - The Metal Crypt zine