It’s every new year that many of us come back together pretty soon after coming together at the end of the last year to announce our favorites of the previous months that we all now talk about what we have to look forward to for the new year. Several are, naturally, ahead of the game and have made these massive lists with dozens of bands sometimes, and while I did that as well, there’s really only one thing that I know for an absolute fact will be staggering and amazing: the entire 2019 release schedule of Transcending Obscurity Records.
If you saw my Top 35 Albums of 2018, you may have noticed that a good number of TO albums made it on the list (17 to be exact), and that may have understandably raised a flag or two for some people. But there’s a reason why this Indian label is my favorite on the planet. Every release truly feels catered to someone of my taste and everything from the variety to the quality of each release is something that has earned my loyalty as well as many, many others. It’s been for the last few years that TO has been gracious enough to gift us label samplers at the start of the year to give us an idea of what’s in store for fans of the label. Last year’s sampler was fucking stupendous top to bottom, and this one is far from any different. While not every single track from every band of which there are fifty with their own respective songs won’t have their albums released in 2019, this sampler is just what many of us need in this underground that’s getting more vast by the day.
The real beauty in these fifty select tracks, much like the label itself, comes in the sheer variety. It may not have everything, but goddamn does it cover a lot of the spectrum of extreme metal! We’re gifted tantalizing peeks of vicious death metal that ranges from sensational acts like Revolting, Bones, Ribspreader, The Grotesquery, Henry Kane, and Grisly to real classics of both the genre as well as the label itself with Paganizer, Burial Hordes, Death Courier, and even Master coming back with a track released last year. Black metal very much gets a heavy list this year as we’re greeted by the scathing performances of Sarcoptes, MRTVI, Felled, and Wardaemonic who all and more inhabit their own special corners of the genre with not one sound being duplicated twice across these thirteen offerings. And finally, things get real slow and heavy as TO yet again brings the doom. Including the masterful performance of Eremit that’s due out at the end of February, we are completely demolished by the likes of The Drowning, Hex, Hexer, Soothsayer, and Oak which consistents of members of the delicious Gaerea who, along with the rest of the doom acts, fucking deliver a grand display of heaviness at every turn.
To say that I’m filled with ecstasy and excitement with these songs would be a true understatement as I can feel it in my bones that 2019 will be another landmark year for TO. I’ve said that about them every year and I will continue to as, literally, every single year is better than the last with the quality only sky-rocketing over time, and I can only see it getting better. We’re already looking forward to releases from the likes of Eremit, 0N0, The Wandering Ascetic, and Illimitable Dolor, and I can speak from experience that the train is only just beginning to roll for 2019! I cannot begin to explain how much you should support Transcending Obscurity and I can only ask that you give this label the chance that it deserves. It’s one of those labels that truly preserves the underground and makes it the great entity that it has become to this day, and it’s only getting better and better.
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