PHENOCRYST set release date for debut album

Blood Harvest Records announces August 30th as the international release date for Phenocryst’s highly anticipated debut album, Cremation Pyre, on CD, vinyl LP, and cassette tape formats.

Cremation Pyre | PHENOCRYST | Blood Harvest (

Hailing from Portugal, Phenocryst was formed in early 2020 by D.S. (Archaic Tomb, Summon) and P. Tosher (Extreme Unction, Scum Liquor,  ex-A Tree of Sign), with N. (Summon, Sepulcros, Concilium) and V.M. (Systemik Violence, Necrobode) joining later on, during the recording of their debut EP. The band is based in the outskirts of Lisbon, and the origin of such conjuration is a rigorous consequence of a vibrant underground activity in the city.

D.S. and P. Tosher wanted to create the foundation of a death metal act crossing other influences like doom and some psychedelic vibes, to illustrate soundscapes of disastrous, catastrophic, and annihilating volcanic and natural events. There are not many artists actually singing about this specific topic, if any, and therefore, the lyrical content is also something to explore. As such, the moniker Phenocryst is fitting.

That debut EP, aptly titled Explosions, was released by Blood Harvest in late 2021 to international acclaim. Across its 23-minute runtime, Phenocryst unsettled with preternatural ease, reeking of death stench and obscure delirium. It was a noble foundation, to be sure, and one that allowed for further liberation of the rich language of death metal.

Speaking more confidently and boldly than ever and armed with a reconfigured lineup, Phenocryst at last deliver their debut album in Cremation Pyre. Another aptly titled record, Cremation Pyre indeed sonically approximates its namesake: somber yet furious, coiling with both inexorable dread and steely-eyed austerity, portentous and spacious in equal measure, and of course MOLTEN. Upon first blush, Phenocryst’s debut full-length is perhaps purer death metal than its short-length predecessor; riffs are hulking and heaving, with a clearer production imparting a gleaming tank-like sound not unlike mid ’90s Bolt Thrower. But even within this seemingly more „standard“ carapace, odd & adroit sensations get malformed into miasmic shapes, and what seems like a no-less-awesome iteration of gleaming meat & potatoes DEATH METAL soon starts sliding and slipstreaming into a vortex of cosmic ash as the second half of the album begins to dig in its supernatural claws and frightening spaciousness opens up. And that’s to say nothing of the subtly reverberating-into-the-abyss bits of melody dotting this sooty landscape…

Forward-thinking traditionalism? Perhaps, but the real beauty of Cremation Pyre is that it’s open to myriad interpretations; one only need step into its lava. Phenocryst prove, once again, that Only Death is Realer!