Welcome A New Era of Monstercat with ‘Uncaged Vol. 11’
Words by Megan Venzin
Let’s raise a toast, friends! Today brings the release of ‘Uncaged Vol. 11’, and get pumped because it’s amongst our most sweeping collections to date featuring more than 80 artists and 85 total earworms. Trust, you’ll want to spend some time with this one.
However it may be wise to grab a box of tissues, too, as the next thing we have to say will be bittersweet for longtime fans of Monstercat’s catalogue-based compilations: ‘Uncaged Vol. 11’ marks the final chapter in this series.
Feeling a bit weepy? Don’t fret! It’s going to be okay -- better than okay, actually. When one sonic door closes, another one blasts open. In this case, the team over at Monstercat wants the community to be the force that pushes the next initiative over the threshold. Are you up for the challenge?
Uncaged Vol. 11
But before we start looking forward, let’s revel in what we’ve built thus far, not to mention, this behemoth anthology.
“There will be no changes to the old compilations,” says A&R Operations Lead, Jon Winter. “We're keeping everything as is, and that's probably no surprise. We want to keep that legacy up there.”
‘Uncaged Vol. 11’ drops today, October 20th, and features every single released since ‘Uncaged Vol. 10’ arrived back on November 9th, 2020. The Uncaged saga finds its worthy climax in nearly a year’s worth of artistic contributions from Monstercat newcomers and veterans alike, with names like Eptic, Pixel Terror and Tisoki appearing multiple times across the massive 85-track playlist.
Those who tuned in over lockdown will remember next-level bangers like Slushii’s “Valhalla”, which saw its epic rhythms and swells immortalized by Hades in the SMITE battleground, “You Wanna Stay'' from psy-trance legends Infected Mushroom off of their Shroomeez EP, and fresh grooves like “Boogie” (feat. Casual) which appeared on Introspection, Tony Romera’s critically-acclaimed debut album which also dropped via the label on September 9th.
‘Uncaged Vol. 11’ is a veritable playground for the senses, offering more than five stunning hours of audio-induced bliss, not to mention a full roster of the international artists who are currently fueling Monstercat’s rise. Whether you’re a fan of bass, house, dnb, electro or any genre in between, ‘Uncaged Vol. 11’ has the airwaves covered with songs produced from every corner of the planet -- North America, Europe, Asia, South America -- they’re all represented. So hit play and rejoice in Monstercat’s enormous scale and reach. You’ll soon recognize that you -- the fans -- are part of something truly special.
End of An Era
Last Friday, Jon and Monstercat Music Director, Orri Sachar, hosted a Q&A to discuss the decision to retire Monstercat’s branded compilations. During the hour-long session, they commemorated points of pride while shining a spotlight on a future based in collaboration and interactivity.
“It was really an opportunity to share a story of discovery, growth, evolution and perseverance,” Sachar says of the compilation project. “And you know, the stories always echoed the challenges that we've all faced and which ultimately led us to become the global community that Monstercat is today.”
There’s no denying that the Uncaged and Instinct compilations have served as a powerful way to showcase the label’s impressive range of talent, but with the advances in streaming their necessity has shifted.
“In 2022, we'll be looking at creating new opportunities to celebrate each brand in a unique way,” Sachar continues. “We just felt that compilations weren't doing that in the way that they used to.”
Listeners can access the Monstercat catalogue anytime on their own. For this reason, among others, Sachar and Winter believe we can dream up something even better together.
“We can boil down the essence of what the compilations were all about, and recreate that, and we really want your help,” Sachar says. “And so that's why we wanted to share this with you today -- because the Monstercat Community has always been so integral in these branded celebrations.”
Sachar and Winter won’t be wasting any time when it comes to sourcing that feedback either. Though this album release will not be accompanied by a typical apparel drop, Winter revealed that fresh looks are currently in the works for 2022, and the Monstercat fam will have a chance to weigh in on what they’d like to see in the apparel shop. That’s just one example of how regular surveys will be used to influence the imprint’s future offerings.
“We also want to present questions and prompts for discussion,” Winter elaborates. “So, it will be kind of like our end-of-year surveys that we send, but on a more consistent basis.”
Sachar also announced that Monstercat has launched a “Virtual Idea Box” on Discord for community members to contribute their thoughts and creations in real time. In Monstercat’s Discord Server, there is a channel called “post-compilation ideas” where the community can brainstorm, share their thoughts, and interact with others regarding how to move forward!
“We really hope that in that sense, you will be able to help us build the future of the celebrations around our music and our brands and our artists,” Sachar shares enthusiastically. “And do it in a way that gets you excited, and allows you to not just be consumers of these products, but actually be participants as well.”
Are you ready to influence the next phase of Monstercat? Join us on Discord and hit us with some amazing ideas on how we can take our brand celebrations to the next level!