I think it’s safe to say that for anyone like me who’s constantly on the search for new material that we each have specific record labels we always refer to simply because we find consistent enjoyment out of those peoples’ hard work. For some, it’s Relapse Records, Metal Blade, or Nuclear Blast. Those are pretty fucking big labels, but I prefer one that thrives in the underground. And that’s what Transcending Obscurity specializes in, and I fucking love it for that. “Well, what sort of shit do they actually specialize in”, you may ask, and my appropriate response is the smashing 55-track compilation that is the label’s 2016 sampler compilation.
Now, this Indian label is cheating a little bit with calling this a 2016 sampler. Yes, it features select tracks from bands (without repeating artists unlike last year’s compilation) such Rudra’s “Ancient Fourth”, Fetid Zombie’s “Devour Virtuous”, Paganizer’s “Adjacent to Purgatory”, or Swampcult’s “Chapter I: The Village” which all came out from records that were released within these last twelve months, but there’s some new and previously unreleased material that’s displayed here. Bands like Mindkult, Norse, Arkheth, and The Whorehouse Massacre all have brand fucking new songs on this sampler, even though their respective unannounced records will be released in 2017. So, my man Kunal Choksi (label owner) is breaking the rules a bit here with that title, but he instantly makes up for it by giving us a taste of the not so old with the unheard to form this list of 55 bands that are absolutely noteworthy of any underground metal fan. Spanning from old school death metal to dissonant black to Vedic to sludgy doom to the atmospheric, this compilation has got it all! Should you have been wanting to find something to listen to that varies from the dissonant to the fucking brutal that goes on for literal hours, then allow Transcending Obscurity to once more take you on a ride through their archives! If you’re familiar with this very reputable label as I am then you’re in for a real treat with brand new tracks and highlights from truly stunning records that have already been put out, and if you’re not quite well known with these guys or previously and utterly ignorant of the label’s existence then sit your fucking ass down and prepare for a multi-hour tour through the best of the underground has to offer for metal.
I realize and completely understand that there are an innumerable amount of labels out there across the world that do an absolutely magnificent job at putting many hours of support into the underground and putting out, even more, records, but it’s easy for me to say that with Transcending Obscurity I’ve had the most fun time with, most consistent label that delivers in my eyes, and one that never ceases to slow its momentum for any reason. Bigger and better seems to be the goal for this label, and in the last year alone that absolutely seems to be the case and they’ve clearly achieved it, and this sampler is a glorious testament to such. This year has been a fucking stupendous year for this label as it’s even given me some of my favorite albums of the year (Primitiv and Rudra to name but two), and by the looks of it 2017 will definitely have some albums you’re going to want to mark down on your calendar and grab your wallets for, and Transcending Obscurity will be happy to reap its just rewards.
LISTEN to the compilation on Bandcamp here.
LIKE Transcending Obscurity on Facebook here.
Please do a very generous service and pay a visit to the label’s main site here, I promise you’ll discover something interesting for sure.