Century Media Records
21 March 2011
by Raziq Rauf
After signing to the American office of major indie label, Century Media last year, this resolutely British quintet has been as busy on both sides of the Atlantic. After a low-key release in 2010, however, TesseracT are hoping to bring their melodic djent sound to as many people as possible with their debut album, One. It’s been a long time coming, but it’s been worth the wait.
Utilising the now almost mythical staccato djent chords, along with the polyrhthmic drums, unorthodox and inventive guitar lines and a sense of ambient melody that we must find bands other than Meshuggah with which to compare them to, TesseracT have formed a brilliantly cohesive and natural sound.
Sad accusations of Swede-aping aside (it’s surely just unfortunate that Meshuggah found their sound with their None EP?), the only real gripe you can have with One is that half the album was featured on last year’s Concealing Fate EP. It’s not a terrible thing per se, because the six-part song is an absolute masterpiece in itself and is a worthy addition to any compact disc.
It is in fact, singer Dan Tompkins that really helps set TesseracT apart from the rest. With his highly emotive and accomplished vocal style, he adds a sincerity and gravitas to the powerful music provided by his bandmates to help create some vast and capturing soundscapes. This is best seen in the likes of ‘Deception’ where his voice soars along in compete contrast to the jagged, jarring sounds around him before crashing down in a throaty roar. During ‘The Impossible’ Tompkins brings the album almost to a mid-point apex with some soaring Eastern-influenced melodies.
The album closer of ‘Eden’ is the grandest showcase for all the band’s talents. Throughout the nine minutes there are dips and turns in the music that even the most fanatical tech metaller would fail to predict. Crashing drums and longing vocals wrap themselves around some unwieldy guitars before slowing down and speeding up once more in a cacophonous blend of mayhem. This is exactly what TesseracT do so well.
Yes, calling this genre The New Wave Of Internet-Based Djent was a joke, but as with all the best jokes, there is a lot of truth in it. While Periphery may have been the online instigators of TNWOIBD, the human element combined with perfect timing means that TesseracT are in the perfect position. Fingers crossed, they will keep counting far, far past One.
Sounds like: Meshuggah, Vildhjarta and… Chester Bennington
Top tracks: Lament, Deception, Eden
Guitar solo rating: you really don’t understand what Djent is, do you /6
TesseracT – One tracklisting
Concealing Fate – Part 1: Acception
Concealing Fate – Part 2: Deception
Concealing Fate – Part 3: The Impossible
Concealing Fate – Part 4: Perfection
Concealing Fate – Part 5: Epiphany
Concealing Fate – Part 6: The Origin
Did you know that TesseracT guitarist, James Monteith started writing a column on Thrash Hits last month?? Go check it out and then email a question to him about absolutely anything at all to Djently@ThrashHits.com.