Obscuro is a nebulous category that encompasses the weird, the puzzling, the ill-conceived, the unclassifiable, the musical territory you never dreamed existed. Or, to put it another way, it's the kind of music that devoted record geeks play for one another, with the announcement "you have to hear this." Obscuro records might be novelties good only for a laugh or two; they might be so utterly bizarre that you can't quite process them no matter how often you've heard them; they might be failed experiments in commercially accepted styles, or wildly uncommercial; or, they might just be extremely rare records that have become legendary among collectors in part because very few people have heard them. Though it can come from virtually anywhere, obscuro tends to be concentrated in areas that either tried to push the boundaries of studio technology, or that experimented with offbeat instrumentation or stylistic fusions. More specifically, that means exotica and space-age pop (from the easy listening side), as well as psychedelia, progressive rock, and experimental (read: avant-garde) rock. Although obscuro records are by definition obscure and difficult to discover (much less track down), the Re/Search compilations Incredibly Strange Music, Vols. 1 and 2 (and their accompanying books) make a good entry point, as do most of the reissues on the Arf! Arf! label.