OBSCURA
Death Metal • Germany

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OBSCURA are a German technical progressive death fusion band founded in 2002 by guitarist/vocalist Steffen Kummerer. The band caused a stir when they - out of nowhere - toured as support for SUFFOCATION on their European tour in 2006 and when they independently released their debut album "Retribution" that same year.

In late 2007 - after several line-up changes - OBSCURA announced drummer Hannes Grossmann (ex-NECROPHAGIST) and fretless bass player Jeroen Paul Thesseling (ex-PESTILENCE) as new permanent members. In early 2008 the new line-up was completed with the addition of Christian Muenzner (ex-NECROPHAGIST) as permanent guitarist.

OBSCURA released their 2nd full-length studio album, "Cosmogenesis" (feat. special guest appearances by Ron Jarzombek (WATCHTOWER, BLOTTED SCIENCE) and Tymon Kruidenier [CYNIC, EXIVIOUS) in early 2009 via Relapse Records. Re(de)fining their approach, OBSCURA continue to create their vision of the future of extreme metal - a symbiosis of death, thrash and black metal merged
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Cosmogenesis by Obscura (CD, Feb-2009, Relapse Records (USA)) Cosmogenesis by Obscura (CD, Feb-2009, Relapse Records (USA)) USD $11.95 Buy It Now 4 days
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OBSCURA - COSMOGENESIS LP 2009 PROGRESSIVE DEATH METAL 180G LTD ED. 400 BLACK OBSCURA - COSMOGENESIS LP 2009 PROGRESSIVE DEATH METAL 180G LTD ED. 400 BLACK USD $70.82 Buy It Now 6 days
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Camera Obscura LET'S GET OUT OF THIS COUNTRY promotional version CD 2006 Camera Obscura LET'S GET OUT OF THIS COUNTRY promotional version CD 2006 USD $5.59 Buy It Now 6 days
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Atheist - Elements LP New Red Vinyl Death Pestilence Obscura Gorguts Cynic Atheist - Elements LP New Red Vinyl Death Pestilence Obscura Gorguts Cynic USD $20.00 Buy It Now 6 days
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AkroasisAkroasis
Relapse 2016
Audio CD$10.30
$13.13 (used)
OmniviumOmnivium
Relapse 2011
Audio CD$8.76
$7.99 (used)
CosmogenesisCosmogenesis
MRI 2009
Audio CD$7.92
$9.50 (used)
RetributionRetribution
Remastered · Extra tracks
Relapse 2010
Audio CD$12.44
$8.01 (used)
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OBSCURA Discography

OBSCURA albums / top albums

.. Album Cover 3.25 | 12 ratings
Retribution
Death Metal 2006
.. Album Cover 3.76 | 20 ratings
Cosmogenesis
Death Metal 2009
.. Album Cover 4.25 | 26 ratings
Omnivium
Death Metal 2011
.. Album Cover 4.75 | 2 ratings
Akroasis
Death Metal 2016

OBSCURA EPs & splits

OBSCURA live albums

OBSCURA demos, promos, fans club and other releases (no bootlegs)

.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Promo
Death Metal 2008

OBSCURA boxset & compilations

.. Album Cover 4.25 | 2 ratings
Illegitimation
Death Metal 2012

OBSCURA singles (0)

OBSCURA movies (DVD, Blu-Ray or VHS)

OBSCURA Reviews

OBSCURA Akroasis

Album · 2016 · Death Metal
Cover art Buy this album from MMA partners
Time Signature
World sea...

Genre: prog/tech death metal

The champions of progressive death metal are back with another onslaught of mind-boggling death metal. To be released in a couple of days, "Akroasis" - like its predecessors - showcases the incredible musicianship that is contained within the entity that is Obscura.

From beginning to end, the listener is bombarded with insane blastbeats and exciting fretless bass figures. Accompanying these are virtuous guitar solos and guitar riffs that range from the melodic over the brutal to the dissonant. Every composition on the album is complex and contains several changes in time and tempo. This is progressive death metal indeed.

If this sounds like a description that could apply to any Obscura album, well then it is because there are no changes in musical direction on this release. That is not a bad thing. With music such as that created by Obscura, each song in itself is full of so many twists and turns that it is not necessary for the band to reinvent their sound in order to keep the listener interested.

Fans of Obscura should of course invest in this album as should any person who claims to be a fan of progressive and/or technical death metal.

OBSCURA Omnivium

Album · 2011 · Death Metal
Cover art Buy this album from MMA partners
Warthur
Despite sharing a name with Gorguts' most unusual album, Obscura's style of progressively-inclined technical death metal is actually decidedly accessible. Displaying a knack for balancing technicality with brutality, Obscura blend melodic elements and gentler moments (such as the acoustic introduction to the album at the start of Septuagint) and high-energy progressive riffs into a fast-paced death metal framework and reliably come up trumps. Not a classic of the genre, but there's certainly less interesting technical death metal albums out there that have won more attention. Progressive metal and technical death metal fans should take the time to heed this one, and maybe Obscura will start to get the prominence they deserve.

OBSCURA Cosmogenesis

Album · 2009 · Death Metal
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Conor Fynes
'Cosmogenesis' - Obscura (7/10)

Obscura are a band that has stood out from the crowded genre of technical death metal. Although their debut 'Retribution' was something of a cold opener that did little to distinguish them, their second record 'Cosmogenesis' was, and still is, one of the most well-regarded tech death albums of the new millennium. Although this very polished, blistering style of music has rarely piqued my interest, Obscura justifies their technical display by putting intelligence into the songwriting, and makes for one of the style's stronger experiences.

Although they are from Germany, Obscura takes most of their influence from American death metal bands, not least the legendary Death, as well as Cynic. Frontman Steffen Kummerer is evidently influenced by Chuck Schuldiner, many of the riffs and song structures reflect what Death was doing around the time of 'Individual Thought Patterns'. Obscura have polished that sound into something much more modern and complex however. 'Cosmogenesis' is defined by lots of dual guitar work, with one guitar playing a riff and the second guitar going at something equally as technical. From a compositional perspective, the music is very complex and dense. Despite relatively conventional song lengths, and even such 'pedestrian' elements as chorus structures, Obscura rarely lets up their onslaught of fast paced riffs, complicated drums and jazzy bass lines. Steffen's vocals typically evoke a fairly generic death growl, and while there are some Cynic-like vocorder clean singing to give a bit of variety, the vocal aspect of Obscura is definitely not their high point.

Obscura's 'Cosmogenesis' is the first album in a tentative four album concept piece, and seeing as this Obscura is an almost completely different lineup than the one heard on 'Retribution', this is the band's defacto debut. As good as 'Cosmogenesis' is however, the music still feels somewhat conventional for technical death metal. Particularly in regards to the cold, mechanical production, Obscura are not yet a full head above their competition at this point. Regardless, Obscura obviously have technical chops beyond most in metal, but what makes them stand out is their intelligence and complex composition. It's easy to play fast, but Obscura steps up to the plate and delivers a calibre of songwriting that justifies their technical abilities.

OBSCURA Cosmogenesis

Album · 2009 · Death Metal
Cover art Buy this album from MMA partners
bonnek
Three years after their modest retro-death debut, Steffen Kummerer returns with a completely revamped Obscura, with an entirely different line-up and with a distinctly more progressive musical direction.

The overall impression is still that of an oppressively intense death metal album, but the new musicians brought a new flavor to the sound, a richness and depth that was entirely absent from the debut. Most striking for me is the change of drum style from new recruit Hannes Grossmann, his playing is much more dynamic and creative, and he throws the death metal clichés of the debut almost entirely overboard. His contribution is essential to the sound. Also the guitar riffing has changed drastically, with less death/thrash-based riffing and instead with multiple bar spanning melodies that lend the music a complex progressive quality. The fretless bass of Jeroen Paul Thesseling stands out as well.

Quite an improvement over the faceless debut. A band to look out for! 3.5 stars.

OBSCURA Retribution

Album · 2006 · Death Metal
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bonnek
Obscura's debut stands far apart from their later albums, it's almost like a 2006 tribute to the early 90's extreme metal, with the exact same type of songwriting and sound of bands like Morbid Angel and Death. The addition of the Death, Morbid Angel and Suffocation bonus cover-tracks on the 2010 re-edition is no coincidence.

Fans of their later material should approach the album with utmost care. Not only is it a pure death metal album, it also doesn't have the best of productions, it's very thick and muddy, suffocating all instruments and with very upfront kick drums, which can get quite annoying during the frequent blast beats. Also the songwriting leaves room for improvement. There's next to nothing in these songs that will make them distinguishable from the songs around them. That's a common feature with death metal and one of the reasons why I am not too fond of it.

Good: the album maintains a consistently oppressive and bludgeoning atmosphere. Bad: it lacks personality and fails to offer memorable material. I'd say this album is decent, but only catered for death metal aficionados that want a trip back to 1990.

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