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Obscura Photo

Band Photo: Obscura (?)

Formed: 2002
From: Munich, Germany
Last Known Status: Active

Latest Obscura News

Below is our complete Obscura news coverage, including columns and articles pertaining to the band. Some articles listed may be indirectly related, such as side projects of the band members, etc.

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Headline News

The Best And Worst Of Metal In 2015

We've almost got another year in the bag, so it's time to take a look back at all that went down throughout 2015 in the world of heavy metal.

This was an uneven year featuring both highs and lows, and metal didn't escape the drama frequent in other styles of music at all in the last 12 months. Echoing previous schisms in famous black metal bands, Immortal finally took its turn imploding and split into two, and this was probably the worst year in recent memory for U.S. metal tours.

On the flip side of that, a solid number of amazing albums saw release, and metal also catapulted to the top of the charts with some major releases that made people outside the underground take notice.

After two solid years dominated by reunions and reboots, it looks like that craze is finally winding down. This year most notably we saw the return of Faith No More with “Sol Invictus,” but on the more underground end industrial black metal outfit Diabolicum also came back with a first album in 14 years. Although not quite on the same scale of time, Arcturus finally returned with a new full-length after a decade's waiting.

While there are less surprise reunions announced for the coming year, there is one classic outfit hitting the road to take note of, as Black Sabbath's “final” tour - dubbed The End - runs through most of 2016 across the globe. While we wait to see what's in store in the coming year, first we'll look back at everything that went down throughout 2015.

The Good: The Best Of Metal In 2015

Both Slayer and Lamb Of God ended up topping the charts with their latest albums (with Lamb Of God even getting nominated for a Grammy). It's not often a metal album hits #2 in the world, but Slayer managed to do it. While not everyone loved the album, the exposure alone is good for the genre overall.

But how was the more underground metal? Simply put: pretty killer, if you knew were to look. There was a solid mix of great albums from long time bands like Amorphis, Cattle Decapitation, Enslaved, and Soilwork, as well as excellent material from newer and less prolific groups like Alkaloid, Tribulation, and Lychgate.

The tried and true classic outfits from Cradle Of Filth to Iron Maiden to My Dying Bride made appearances, and there were some seriously ambitious undertakings (Swallow The Sun released a TRIPLE album). A handful of bands that were already solid managed to really outdo themselves with stellar material this year though, including Subterannean Masquerade, Code, Shining, and Melechesh. More...

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Obscura Streaming New Track

It has been five years since the release of Obscura's "Omnivium" album. Now the progressive metal masters return with "Akróasis" (Greek for "hearing" or "listening" and a full track has landed online from the impending release. Check out "Sermon Of The Seven Suns" in the player below.

Produced by the band and V. Santura (Triptykon, Pestilence), "Akróasis" is eight songs diverse enough to serve as a near-comprehensive introduction to all of extreme metal. The album will be released February 5th, 2016 via Relapse Records.

The album will be available in CD, 2xLP and digital download. The track listing is as follows:

1. Sermon of the Seven Suns
2. The Monist
3. Akróasis
4. Ten Sepiroth
5. Ode to the Sun
6. Fractal Dimension
7. Perpetual Infinity
8. Weltseele
9. Melos (Deluxe Vinyl Bonus Track)
10. The Origin of Primal Expression (CD Bonus Track) More...

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Obscura Issues Second Teaser For "Akróasis"

German technical/progressive death act Obscura - featuring Thulcandra's Steffen Kummerer - issued a second preview teaser for the upcoming new album "Akróasis." The album is set for release on February 5th via Relapse Records.

The track list for the release is:

1. Sermon of the Seven Suns
2. The Monist
3. Akróasis (see music video here)
4. Ten Sepiroth
5. Ode to the Sun
6. Fractal Dimension
7. Perpetual Infinity
8. Weltseele
9. Melos (Deluxe Vinyl Bonus Track)
10. The Origin of Primal Expression (CD Bonus Track)

Check out the preview here: More...

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Obscura Releases "Akróasis" Music Video

German technical/progressive death act Obscura - featuring Thulcandra's Steffen Kummerer - issued a music video for the title track of the new album "Akróasis." The album is set for release on February 5th via Relapse Records. Pre-orders for the release can be made at this location.

The album features eight songs and was produced by the band and V. Santura (Triptykon, Pestilence). The track listing is:

1. Sermon of the Seven Suns
2. The Monist
3. Akróasis
4. Ten Sepiroth
5. Ode to the Sun
6. Fractal Dimension
7. Perpetual Infinity
8. Weltseele
9. Melos (Deluxe Vinyl Bonus Track)
10. The Origin of Primal Expression (CD Bonus Track)

Check out "Akróasis" here: More...

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Obscura Reveals New Album Details

It has been five years since the release of Obscura's "Omnivium" album (reviewed here). Now the progressive metal masters return with "Akróasis" (Greek for "hearing" or "listening") - check out a trailer and the artwork below.

"Akróasis" will be released February 5, 2016 via Relapse Records. The album will be available in CD, 2xLP and digital download formats. Steffen Kummerer had this to say:

"With 'Akróasis,' we produced our grand opus featuring eight songs of fluent arrangements, odd time signatures never heard before in metal, and the most high end production in the history of the band. Without question Akróasis is the heaviest, most complex record we have made to date. We cannot wait to perform live again and bring this excellent music to stages around the globe."

The album features eight songs and was produced by the band and V. Santura (Triptykon, Pestilence). The track listing is: More...

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Obscura Finishes New Album

After dropping off the Summer Slaughter tour due to visa problems, technical death metal band Obscura has issued a new update on the progress of an upcoming album. Bassist Linus Klausenitzer comments:

"We are proud to announce that we finished the production of our new album! The production was full of extremes in so many ways. All band members were working at their limit to make this album the best possible.

"Thanks to the mix and mastering qualities of our long time producer V. Santura our songs became even more powerful than I could have imagined. You can be looking forward to very fast and Obscura typical up tempo tracks but also some very new sounds with very detailed, atmospheric, dark and heavy parts."

This upcoming release will follow 2011's "Omnivium" (reviewed here), with full details still to arrive.

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Obscura Drops Off Summer Slaughter Tour

In addition to After The Burial dropping off the Summer Slaughter Tour due to the death of the band's guitarist, Obscura also will not be appearing due to visa problems. Obscura comments:

"Obscura won’t be able to participate in this year’s Summer Slaughter due to visa issues. We started the visa process in April a few days after we confirmed the tour but it seems that U.S. Immigration is a lottery to get a visa in time or not.

"We lost all of our flights, our gear is in Los Angeles, our U.S/ crew lost their job for a whole month and the 3000 US$ we paid for visas are non-refundable. In total Obscura lost 15000 US$ with this stunt to be straight. This is an existential amount of money for a band of this size. And personally, I face this situation a second time after 2012’s Death DTA disaster.

"We have been prepared, hired a professional agency to have all visas been applied for correctly and in time – starting in April. The immigration failed to file a necessary I-797 form (the final work permission) from June 3rd – this takes up to two weeks according to their official information but they did not even started at this point, so we won’t get an estimate when we can pick up our passports/visas. To clarify, if we would try to get into the country with a tourist visa or without a visa at all the band will get deported on our own costs and get banned from the United States for 10 years.

"If we jump on the tour at a later point we will lose even more money since all of our gear, production and breakables arrived in Los Angeles two weeks ago. Also booking flights a second time costs us another 8000 US$. Our coach is based in Los Angeles and paying 1000 US$ per day until we finally would be able to enter the country would ruin the band completely.

"It is a bitter, frustrating situation we, our loyal fan base and all promoters and agents have to face right now. We won’t give up and we will come back to the United States, but we have to drop off Summer Slaughter 2015."

This bad news follows the absolute implosion of the Metal Alliance tour and the abysmal sales and constant bickering between bands of the Mayhem Festival. Is the era of big U.S. metal tours coming to an end?

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Arch Enemy Kicking Off Summer Slaughter

Update: this is a bad year for U.S. metal tours. Obscura just dropped off the bill due to visa problems.

Arch Enemy is kicking off the 2015 installment of Summer Slaughter, which sees the griyo as the tour's headliner.

This will mark the band's second North American run on this album cycle - but the first stateside trek to feature new guitarist Jeff Loomis. For a preview of what concert-goers can expect live, a new tour trailer has been launched, featuring footage of the track "Avalanche" from Hellfest.

The Summer Slaughter tour also features Born Of Osiris, Veil of Maya, The Acacia Strain, Obscura, Beyond Creation, and Cattle Decapitation. Dates are as follows: More...

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Obscura Taps Rüdinger For "Summer Slaughter Tour"

Obscura taps Ex-The Faceless drummer Alex Rüdinger (see also clip below) - now drummer of Conquering Dystopia - for the bands run on this year's edition of the Summer Slaughter Tour. Original drummer Sebastian Lanser will be forced to sit out the tour due to health issues.

Explains Stefan Kummerer:

"Regrettably, we are unable to perform at Progstage Festival, Tel Aviv and Metaldays Festival Slovenia this year. Our drummer Sebastian Lanser overstrung his left hand and suffers from a serious inflammation since then. Playing this complex music with this condition won’t allow us to play a tight 80 minute headlining show our fans and we as musicians demand.

"We decided not to play a halfhearted set, instead we postpone both concerts and come back with an extended live show including songs of our new, upcoming album. Dates will be published soon.

"In the meantime Alex Rüdinger (Conquering Dystopia) will step in to play this year’s Summer Slaughter festival tour in North America.” More...

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Summer Slaughter Adds More Dates

As previously announced, extreme metal titans Arch Enemy will return to North America this July/August to headline the 2015 installment of Summer Slaughter featuring Born Of Osiris, Veil of Maya, The Acacia Strain, Obscura, After the Burial, Cattle Decapitation, and Beyond Creation.

Additional dates have now been added to the summer trek, with the current full Summer Slaughter itinerary as follows:

July 28, 2015 - The Summit Music Hall - Denver, CO
July 30, 2015 - Val Air Ballroom - Des Moines, IA
July 31, 2015 - Skyway Theater - Minneapolis, MN More...

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Obscura Checks In From The Studio

In addition to performing on the Summer Slaughter tour kicking off in July, Obscura is also currently working on a new album to follow 2011's "Omnivium" (reviewed here) and now the band has checked in with studio updates.

Drummer Sebastian Lanser comments: “It's been almost a week since I was in the studio tracking drums for the new Obscura album. It was an awesome experience, a great time with lots of fun, inspiration and exhausting drum arrangements.

"The drums are sounding amazing and I am really satisfied with how the arrangements turned out. I think that the new album has a lot of Obscura´s original trademarks paired with some new elements I really like. Finding a word which fits the music is kind of hard but “richness” comes to my mind when thinking of the compositions, arrangements, instrumentation and last but not least craft!” More...

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Headline News

Arch Enemy Headlining Summer Slaughter 2015

Arch Enemy will return to North America this July/August to headline the 2015 installment of the Summer Slaughter tour.

Featuring Born of Osiris, Veil of Maya, The Acacia Strain, Obscura, After the Burial, Cattle Decapitation and Beyond Creation as support, this tour will mark the band's second North American run on this album cycle - but the first stateside trek to feature new guitarist Jeff Loomis.

Arch Enemy founder and guitarist Michael Amott comments: "Very pleased to be returning to North America on our current 'War Eternal' campaign...It's an absolute honor to headline the 2015 edition of the legendary Summer Slaughter tour! See you all very soon!"

Dates are as follows (more to be added in the coming weeks): More...

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Obscura's Kummerer Presenting Engl Gigmaster E310

German technical death metal masters of Obscura have just posted a new video showing vocalist/guitarist Steffen Kummerer presenting you the Engl Gigmaster E310 and its features.

Check out now the clip below.

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Obscura Releasing New Album

German progressive metal masters Obscura will enter Dreamsound Studios this April to begin recording drums for a new album and first full-length in over four years, following the "Omnivium" album (reviewed here).

The band will work once again with long time producer V. Santura ("Cosmogenesis," "Omnivium"). The album will see a late 2015 release via Relapse Records. Guitarist / vocalist Steffen Kummerer commented on the upcoming material:

"We are all pleased with the new material which pairs the songwriting, technicality and arrangements of our previous albums with the creative input of members Linus Klausenitzer, Tom 'Fountainhead' Geldschläger and Sebastian Lanser, while keeping our trademark prog riffing across the fusion and death metal landscape that makes Obscura sound unique. This album sees Obscura move a step further."

While the band prepares the upcoming recordings, a digital tablature book for "Omnivium" is available for pay-what-you-want download at this location. The book contains 368 pages in total, including tabs for all lead and rhythm guitars, transcribed live versions of each solo and arrangements for two guitars plus liner notes for each song. See the tech death group live on these dates:

July 18th Prog Stage Festival Israel
July 24th Metal Days Open Air Tolmin, Slovenia

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Obscura Issues Album Update

After parting ways with Hannes Grossmann And Christian Muenzner earlier this month, Obscura has set up a row of auditions in August / September to find fitting members who may participate in the band's upcoming album.

The yet-untitled fourth full length is the third out of a four album concept arc that started with the release of "Cosmogenesis" (reviewed here) in 2009. Steffen Kummerer comments:

"Currently we are in the middle of the songwriting process for our new album. The yet finished material turns out to focus on the trademarks we established during the last 12 years. Technicality paired with stringent arrangements, progressive riffing across fusion and death metal that makes Obscura sound unique. We will enter the studio by the end of 2014. Since Christian Muenzner and Hannes Grossmann departed we recieved requests from all over the world. We invite the candidates that may fit and get in touch directly with each person. To both, Christian and Hannes; I wish them the best for their solo careers and new projects."

Linus Klausenitzer adds: "We spend a lot of time for songwriting and preproduction to make the new songs as intense as possible. Every album needs to have a certain vibe to stand out from the others. I'm glad that we can see this picture in the puzzle already."

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Obscura Splits With Drummer And Guitairst

Drummer Hannes Grossmann and guitarist Christian Muenzner have announced their departure from German prog/tech death metal band Obscura.

Due to these lineup changes, recordings for the band's fourth album and follow-up to "Omnivium" (reviewed here) have been postponed. Christian Muenzner comments:

"My decision to step down from my position as the lead guitar player in Obscura after more than 6 years was not an easy one, but even though it may come unexpected for the majority of fans, it is something I have been contemplating for the last couple of years. There is no bad blood between me and any of the other members of the band.

"However, I just want to devote the biggest part of the time that I have to work on my own music and visions. Doing this, I just can't invest the bulk of my time into the band, because a band operating at the level of Obscura does not work as a an additional thing or even a 'hobby'. It demands a lot of time and availability, but I I know that if my heart is not fully into the music anymore it is not true to myself, my bandmates or to the fans, and I have always believed that solely the fact that a band is successful or that people expect you to play a certain style of music are not enough of a reason to do it.

"A second crucial factor in my decision was that I am still dealing with a neurologic condition in my fretting hand called Focal Dystonia, which almost took the ability to play guitar away from me completely by late 2011/early 2012. Even though I regained most of my chops by now through re-training and Botox therapy, the condition is still there and I have to be very careful not to relapse and undo my progress by putting too much strain on my hand, which is why touring several months on an album cycle with material that brings me to the edge of my technical ability every night is not an option for me anymore in the near future.

"The slightest chance of recovery or at least further improvement have absolute priority for me in the coming years, as I want to be able to play guitar and release music for much longer. Thus I decided to focus mainly on my teaching career and on writing and recording my own music for now. I will remain very active and you will hear a lot of new music from me in the future. More...

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Death Announces New Tour Dates

After a North American tour and a performance at Neurotic Deathfest, Death: DTA will tour Europe for the first time.

The Death line up will consist of Sean Reinert (Cynic) - drums, Paul Masvidal (Cynic) - guitar, Steve DiGiorgio (Autopsy, Testament, Iced Earth) - bass, and Max Phelps (Cynic) - guitar & vocals. The set list will feature most of the songs from the "Human" album plus other Death classics.

In 1998, "The Sound Of Perseverance," the very last studio album of progressive death metal icons Death from Florida, saw the light of day. In 2001 charismatic band leader, guitar god, and sound pioneer Chuck Schuldiner tragically passed away. Many years later, the towering monolith of Chuck and Death's testimony hasn't even faintly started to crumble.

Direct support will come from German tech death heroes Obscura, who's singer/guitarist Steffen Kummerer was asked to be vocalist on the first Death-tribute shows in 2012, but couldn't take the job due to visa issues. Also on the tour will be Darkrise. More...

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Over Your Threshold To Miss Final Date Of Tour

Germany's Over Your Threshold, which has been on tour with Obscura, has checked in with the following announcement about missing the trek's final date:

"We feel very sorry to inform you that the 'A DECADE OF PROGRESSIVE DEATH METAL' tour has come to an end for us earlier than expected. Due to a road accident with our caravan on the way to Zurich we are forced to cancel the tour´s big finale tonight. N

"one of us were harmed, but we won´t be able to make it in time to the venue. It´s an unfortunate and frustrating happening, but it can´t be changed anymore.

"Nevertheless, Over Your Threshold is looking back to a mind-blowing tour that exceeded all of our expectations. Thank you so much to all the visitors and supporters, every single venue´s staff, the whole tour crew, Deadborn, Aeon and last but not least Steffen Kummerer & Obscura to make this an unforgettable experience!

"Once more…THANK YOU!!! See you soon!" More...

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Obscura Announces Shows With Aeon

Celebrating a decade of progressive death metal, Germany's Obscura will be heading out for a nine-date tour through Germany, Austria, and Switzerland in March of 2013.

The Swedish Satanic Death Metal outfit Aeon will be acting as direct support to the headliner. Comments the band: "It will be awesome to do this tour with Obscura, and with our newly released album 'Aeons Black' we are now stronger than ever with a killer live set that will leave no venue and crowd intact. Expect nothing else but pure fucking death metal!"

The opener on the run will be Munich death metal hopefuls Over Your Threshold, who comment on their first tour as follows: "We feel honoured to be a part of the 'A Decade Of Progressive Death Metal' Tour and also are very excited to present all songs of our recently released debut album 'Facticity' to you people. There are plenty of stages we´ve never entered before, and all the more we are looking forward to share them with such stunning bands like Obscura, Deadborn, and our label-mates of Aeon. This is a mandatory happening for all the metal heads who are into tech death metal! See you on tour!"

22/03/13 – DE – München – Backstage
23/03/13 – DE – Ludwigshafen – Sultans Of Death Fest
24/03/13 – DE – Berlin – K17
25/03/13 – DE - Hamburg – Marx
26/03/13 – DE – Bochum – Bahnhof Langendreer
27/03/13 – DE – Siegen – Vortex
28/03/13 – DE – Kassel – K19
29/03/13 – AT – Wien – Escape
30/03/13 – CH – Zürich – Alte Kaserne

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Obscura Announces 10th Anniversary Show

German progressive death metal titans Obscura have announced a special 10th anniversary show this December in Landshut, Germany. This one night only event will take place on December 15th at Alte Kaserne with special guests Dark Fortress, Hokum, and Illegimitation, an incarnation of the band’s original lineup, which will play the band's first demo in its entirety. More info on the show, including ticket information is available via the band’s official website here.

Guitarist/Vocalist Steffen Kummerer commented on the upcoming anniversary show: “After years of recording, touring & building up a loyal fanbase around the world we invite all of our friends & fans to our 10 year anniversary show in Landshut, Germany. We celebrate the end of the ‘OMNIVIUM Worldtour‘ in the same city where it started early 2011. To make this event something special we reformed the original lineup of Obscura for a short set, playing the full ‘ILLEGIMITATION‘ demo as a whole. While DARK FORTRESS and HOKUM share a long history of links with OBSCURA, it seems almost self-evident to have both booked for ‘10 YEARS OBSCURA – A Decade Of Progressive Death Metal‘. Let’s make this a great evening for everyone.”

Obscura is also currently streaming the 2011 album "Omnivium" (reviewed here) at this location. Obscura's upcoming tour dates are:

Dec 8 Tlalpan, Mexico Circo Volador
Dec 15 Landshut, Germany Alte Kaserne (10th Anniversary Show)
March 23 2013 Ludwigshafen, Germany Sultans Of Death Fest

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