It gets harder to be impressed by contemporary record labels. Most of the surviving ones are either specialising in re-issues of "lost gems", out-of-prints and "demos" of specific scenes and time periods. Be it psych rock, garage punk, extreme metal or noise, these labels are important but when one wants to search for the newest and most exciting music out there, they are not the ones we turn to. How about the many newly formed boutique-type labels? Well, many of them are excellent in their graphic designs and layouts and it is definitely great to hold the physical products from these labels in your hands and going through the ritual of taking the vinyl or CD or cassette out of the sleeve or case and placing them into your players. Many of them however dont last for long due to the twin-pronged download onslaught and increasing competition in an arguably shrinking market.
So why am I doing a feature on Profound Lore Records? Well, it is because the label releases consistently give me the rush album after album since 2007. From Cobalt to Portal, from Pallbearer to Krallice, from Wold to Yob, I am talking about great albums to classic-status legible masterpieces. A one-man cult Extreme Metal label, with great art work and swift retail and shipping to clients to boot, Chris Bruni, the honcho of the label is all about passion, dedication and oustanding taste in what he believes in. It brings me back to other great labels like ESP-Disk, SST, PSF and Basic Channel/Chain Reaction. Extreme Metal is at the cutting edge and venguard of quality music in the 21st century and Profound Lore is right at the front of the pack. Here are my picks for 2013 (Alone!!!):
Cobalt - Eater of Birds: This is a masterpiece of modern music, out of print for years now finally back again.
Cobalt - Gin: Another masterpiece which went out of print and just back in circulation.
Portal - Vexovoid: A great follow-up to its previous releases, one of the releases of 2013 already.
Altar of Plagues - Teethed Glory & Injury: Third album from these Irish extreme metallers, imaginative and evocative.
Vhol - Self Titled - A supergroup of sort, magnificent and crushingly heavy, and more importantly beautiful too.