I seem to have fixed this issue and posting my answer below.
TLDR: this seems to be common problem with AMD machines.
I am stuck with a boot problem I struggle to narrow down:
I installed elementary OS on a new laptop*, after running on my old laptop no problem
Only difference is that I added drive encryption this time
When booting, the system sometimes gets stuck after I enter the password for disk decryption.
In these cases, it takes me to a black screen with the white cursor, but stays there until I press the power button to restart - there is no error message I see, but some updates flash by very quickly (do not know how to slow them down)
This does not happen every time, and eventually the computer boots & works fine
--> I am really confused here regarding where to debug: does this potentially have to do the decryption part? Or the OS? And why is it not consistent?
--> Sometimes it will take me to the screen where I can pick between different Linux kernels / recovery mode: is this something I should adjust?
Any pointers are much appreciated, as I don't even know where to start on this one... Thanks!
*Lenovo T495, AMD® Ryzen™ 5 Pro 3500U, 24GB of RAM, 1TB Samsung SSD