The rise and fall of CRYPTOPHOBISM 1993-1995

Since I receive very often inquiries about this old project I have decided that it is time to clarify some things about the brief history of the band. This is how I remember those times.

It all started in 1993 when me - Ivo Iliev (guitars) and Mikhail Parushev (drums) met, during a rehearsal of my death metal band by that time Elipsohopia. We were just teens living in one of the poorest countries in eastern Europe, My first lousy guitar (it is the same one with which I recorded “Under the shadow of fear” by the way) was unbranded and my distortion pedal was - a hand made circuit board inserted in a soap dish box that supposedly had the “heavy” sound of “And justice for all”.

We shared the love for doom metal and Mike wanted to start a project inspired by the band Lord Of Putrefaction. Miro joined after a little while as vocalist and we recorded our first rehearsal demo in one of the cultural halls of the Mathematics High School in Varna with simple tape recorder placed nearby. I still think it sounds like shit and is very immature, but we were just kids by that time. You can hear it in it's entirety here;

Mikhail came up with the name of the band and the demo was released on audio tape with Xerox copied artwork designed by Miro. I remember spreading hundreds of fliers throughout the underground and used my contacts with various zines and tape trading bands. We had some reviews and even did few interviews...


review published by the Japanese magazine Mutilation - issue number 4

After a while Miro has left the band and I took over as vocalist, Nick Lesov joined us as a bass player and we invited a permanent keyboard player Radostina (can't remember her last name). As we were inspired mostly by My Dying Bride, Crematory and also we loved “Tales from the 1000 lakes” by Amorphis we decided to add the synth to the music. We wrote and prepared new material to record and publish it (ourselves) - a new demo in a pro studio. We were unsigned by that time and even considering a label to release us was something unimaginable.

When everything was prepared and we booked the studio, Mike didn’t show up for the recordings. One of the demo’s songs “Cold winds of hate” was recorded while we were sorting out the sound a week before the aforementioned session. You can hear the preliminary recording here even though there are some playing mistakes.

recorded live in the studio by Ivo - vocs, guitars, Nick - bass, Radostina - keys, Mikhail - drums

Things fell apart after this. The reason he gave us for his absence in the studio was that he wasn’t satisfied with the sound we achieved on the previous session. He showed less and less interest and was mainly involved in his other project Zhen Shen. We tried to find a new drummer, but nobody wanted to play slower tempos in our area. The funny thing is that by that time I even asked our current drummer Valentin about joining Cryptophobism, he refused stating that he would never play in a band with harsh vocals. 29 years later he joined Darkflight and recorded drums for our last album... what a strange set of circumstances. I've recently asked him if he remembers this, he didn't...

Anyways, this was the end of Cryptophobism.

In 1998, as I left the mandatory military service, my fingers were itching to reform the band and wrote few songs sketched on audio tapes. Those were never released or properly recorded by that time.

In 2005 as I was experimenting with the sound of Darkflight I decided to record these old Cryptophobism songs.  All 3 of them; “People that no one will miss“, “A cavern for ancient souls“, “Accidental suicide“ and uploaded them on the german mp3 webhosting site SOUNDLIFT for no particular reason.

Apparently somebody picked them from there and posted them on metal-archives, listed as demo from 1998 (this information they took probably from the ID tag information and is completely wrong). There are people who do that to gain points just to have more privileges on the site.
I wouldn’t even call this a demo, it was never listed as such, since the band didn't exist in a long time and I didn't even care. It was a surprise that somebody bothered to create even an artwork for it which was neither approved, nor I was asked about it.

Anyways, those songs somehow sparked some interest in the underground (to my surprise), even the large NO CLEAN SINGING website wrote a brief review. Also some small labels offered me to release it officially on cassette to whom I refused. However, if somebody is interested to have it on vynyl, I might reconsider.

I thought i needed to write this clarification.
There's only one demo officially released by this band and it is the rehearsal one from 1993.
Everything else is just random songs floating around. Being in this band brings back only good memories. We were happy doing that even with all those difficulties. Great times when we were young!

I would also like to thank Atanas from Bulgarian Metal Archive whose interest took me down this memory lane.
Ivo Iliev.