By Ismaeel Attallah (Crescent)
Normally, toplists pivot on a select set of numbers. Top 5 (per usual here at the Decibel site), Top 10, Top 20, and Top 100 — like our Top 100 special issue series (HERE) — are the normal currency of toplists. Well, Egypt-originated death metallers Crescent, who have a new album Carving the Fires of Akhet out now on Listenable, have conspired to throw out the usual paradigms when asked about places to see in Egypt that aren’t the Giza plateau. Guitarist vocalist Ismaeel Attallah had a near-infinite amount of options (from Nubian pyramids in Sudan to the Temple of Kalabsha near Aswan) to go through when selecting his locales. He settled on six well-known sites that inspired then and are awe-striking now.
By the jackal-headed Egyptian god of death and embalming Anubis, we chant…
O, Anubis! Mighty Anubis!
As you take [our] measure,
And weigh his heart as he stands before you…
6. Karnak Temple
The Karnak Temple dates back from around 2055 BC to around 100 AD. It was built as a cult temple and was dedicated to the gods Amun, Mut, and Khonsu. Being the largest building for religious purposes ever to be constructed, the Karnak Temple was known as “most select of places” by ancient Egyptians.
5. Habu Temple
It’s the Temple of Ramesses III at Medinet Habu was an important New Kingdom period temple structure in the West Bank of Luxor in Egypt. Aside from its size and architectural and artistic importance, the mortuary temple is probably best known as the source of inscribed reliefs depicting the advent and defeat of the Sea Peoples during the reign of Ramesses III. It has a brutal tyrannical feel to it that we personally find fascinating.
4. Abu Simbel Temple
It was dedicated to the gods Amun, Ra-Horakhty, and Ptah, as well as to the deified Ramesses himself. It is generally considered the grandest and most beautiful of the temples commissioned during the reign of Ramesses II. One of the greatest temples in Egypt and most captivating.
3. Efu Temple
Built from 237 – 57 BCE. It is dedicated to the falcon god, Horus. The temple was built on top of much older ruins dating back to Ramses III, and was constructed over the course of 180 years under a variety of rulers during the Ptolemaic period in Egypt. One of the most preserved temples in Egypt.
2. Kom Ombo Temple
Was built during the Graeco-Roman period (332 BC – 395 AD). A unique temple because it is in fact a double temple, dedicated to Sobek the crocodile god, and Horus the falcon-headed god.
1. Luxor Temple
This temple focused on the annual Opet festival, an event in which statues of Mut, Khonsu, and Amun would travel from Karnak to the temple. Still used as a place of worship.