In order for the music to have elements of being "annoying," Kath explained that he created many of the sounds on tracks that would appear on Crystal Castles by sampling textures produced from a circuit-bent Atari 5200 console.
The use of these sounds led multiple journalists and bloggers to categorized the works of Crystal Castles under an 8-bit chiptune genre that the duo did not intend to be classified as; this categorization was further affected by the coincidence of an early 1980s arcade game by Atari named Crystal Castles (1983).
They released many limited vinyl singles between 20 before releasing a trilogy of critically acclaimed albums between 20.
The two met each other in 2004 and both had an interest in noise music acts like AIDS Wolf.
This inspired the two to start a project that made noise music, but instead of guitars, they would using electronic sounds made with an circuit-bent Atari 5200, which led multiple journalists to describe their genre of music as a chiptune style they did not intend it to be categorized as.
When questioned about his motives behind this, Kath responded with "To weed out the wimps, to annoy the posers. In April 2010, an early mix of the album leaked, prompting the label to release prior to the originally-planned date of June.
The album was moderately successful charting in the UK at number 48, the US at number 188 and number 25 in Australia.
The pair then decided to formally become a group, picking out stage names together, with the name 'Crystal Castles' pulled from a line in the cartoon She-Ra: Princess of Power: "The fate of the world is safe in Crystal Castles." Later in the year Lies Records collected most of the vinyl singles and released them on CD and 12" vinyl for the first time, along with many previously unreleased tracks and 3 songs recorded just for the collection which made their debut album.
The record included tracks like "XXZXCUZX ME", which Kath states he made 'grating' on purpose.
Their third album, (III), was released on November 12, 2012 and was the number 1 album of 2012 on Tumblr and also on Hype Machine.
The album included 4 singles: "Plague", "Wrath of God", "Sad Eyes" and "Affection".
Ian Cohen, a contributor for Pitchfork, analyzed that while the content on Crystal Castles goes through multiple genres and types of structures, "the body of the album can be distilled to an essence of the glassy, ten-lane stare of Last Exit with Ed Banger's egg-frying EQ." Mehan Jayasuriya, writing for Pop Matters, called it the "most iconoclastic and the most convincing" record of 2008's electro dance scene, reasoning that "their stripped-down, yet grimy aesthetic spits in the face of maximalist electro, offering a counterpoint to the polished, melodically overstated sound of Daft Punk and their progeny." He wrote that it "smash[es] all allusions to the Atari/cartoon generation of the ’80s into their minute molecular parts and then piecing their electrum fragments into a bigger, newer, musical battlecat." A Drowned in Sound critic went as so far as to call the music "otherworldly" and "almost new-worldly" and compared it to the works of My Bloody Valentine, The Velvet Underground, and Sonic Youth in that the band "strike out to the edges of their own sensibility and return with the most unwieldy, uncomfortable sounds they find there before trying to work that noise inwards ‘til it passes for pop." Cohen noted that this unpredictable aspect was especially true in the LP's last two tracks: "the mad dash of "Black Panther" is probably what nu-rave was supposed to sound like (the Goth! ), and then the record ends on a disquietingly beautiful shoegaze comedown played on an acoustic guitar of all things ("Tell Me What to Swallow")." The random element of Crystal Castles also applies to Glass's vocal performances where, in the words of All Music journalist Heather Phares, it can be "terrifying on one track and kittenish on another." Bryan Sanchez of Delusions of Adequacy called it "one of the best electronic albums of the year," highlighting how it was "stylishly sequenced," where "change of paces happen and come in at just the right times." All Music journalist Heather Phares was one of them, describing the album as "fresher, more complex, and much less gimmicky than might be expected, especially for those familiar with only the band's singles" and a "familiar-sounding, edgy, innocent, menacing, bold, nuanced, and altogether striking debut." Tony Naylor, in his eight-out-of-ten review for NME, noted feeling "intrigued and awestruck" after listening to the record and opined that "you will hear nothing better this year than" the tracks "Untrust Us," "Crimewave," "Air War," and "Vanished." A reviewer for Drowned in Sound stated that "what makes Crystal Castles so thrilling is that [the duo] turn the fruits of [the availability of technology] into weapons to use against it, using [it] to cut through the shitty mire." He praised it as "a crystal castle of technological rubbish fusing together under the harsh gaze of a falling sun, Kath and Glass digging around in the molten plastic for things to bang together, new-age Stigs dreaming of leisure’s lost golden age in a data dump." Crystal Crystals also had a few mixed critical opinions.