TesseracT – One

As an art metal staple, TesseracT’s vast precedent in light of One is yet another triumph of the information age; is it interesting that, after a half decade of strong e-demonstrations, their first LP on big time indie Century Media has produced an impressively banal culmination? Perhaps, as One furthers exposes the uneasy median between a respectable Karnivool reach and obnoxious nu-metalcore that TesseracT embodies. The extreme music community finally seems to have caught up with the band by gifting numerous signings to infinitely more puerile bands that have made a habit out of aping TesseracT’s apers; excuse the rolling of the eyes if it’s in 2011 that One‘s effect is officially felt. The song skeletons have survived but not much along with them. “Sunrise” and “April”‘s openings were pleasantly familiar, and a testament to the overall tracks’ memorability in light of my not having listened to them since before I was a high school graduate.  But where are the swells? The folding of the metal abstracts as an ivory tower voice dictates the undulation of their groove? What listeners get in 2011 is a rehearsal, and a sorry weariness that surely said all and was done with it 2 album cycles ago.

Predictably, the middle “Concealing Fate” sextet is the standout material. But we more or less were given access to that last year. Nonetheless, this is a noticeably punchier sound for the EP tracks, complete with a flavorful (and always audible) bass thump and saturated guitar tone (thankfully, the yawn-worthy lack of low end in a thrasher like “Deception” on the EP edition has been given its due heft here). The six movement mini epic also possesses a palpable spontaneity and conviction in execution that is mercilessly absent in the beginning and ending thirds – Singer Dan Tompkins can be heard to wrinkle the face a bit more with the soulful belting of “Acceptance” and “Origin”‘s more memorable sections, taking more license with the material (throaty wailing aside); moments such as these are a reminder that a great portion of this musical landscape is not, perhaps, a stylish tundra, but gray ectoplasm waiting to be formed into something painterly or at least artful. The abundance of aesthetic is drastically without the dramatic control of dynamics that once made TesseracT a band worthy of being on anyone’s radar.

The reverse embodied between One and, say, Periphery (did you really think this was going to be the first review you’ve read that did not mention that specific Baltimore outfit?) is that these tracks have seemingly been preserved in formaldehyde whereas the latter’s used the momentum of their impending release to impact larger than anyone expected. “Eden” distills TesseracT’s trademark affected clean tone pluckings (another element that has ruthlessly been re-appropriated thanks to the genre’s vultures) with a fade that anyone could miss; no, One is not a wholly sterile contribution, but it seems to have understated and lost its grasp of the substance that propagated an interest for this release in the first place.

(5.5/10)



10 Comments

  1. _pv_ wrote:

    wow look at this idiot, first of all, stupid douche bang

    secondly, youre a real fag dude. . . elitist POS who acts like using a bunch of big words in a review is going to make it better well it isnt asshole, it makes you look like a snobby ass, probably from california or some shitty hipster town in canada

    oh yeah and this album fukin rules, tesseract are great as well but tiny brains like urs wouldnt be able to understand real music like this. then again, most ppl dont get djent bc they are way too dumb n listen 2 shiet like radiohead nbeatles bc its not complex… u prolly don even play guitar just sit around ur comp all day on thesaruses n rightin reviews, bro djent is crzy n maybe 1 day ull grow up lsiten to it n unstrnd it betta but prolly not cuz ull be 2 busy sukin joana newsomes new songs

  2. progthinker420 wrote:

    djent isnt just a genre bro its a way of life and a way of progressive thinking your just mad because your not a progressive thinker like *WE* are faggot

  3. Haha, "sit around a comp all day with a thesaurus" – classic comment, could even be the greatest comment I've seen anywhere on the net! Now to Tesseract. I really like this album, and think "One" is one of the finest pieces of progressive metal I've heard in awhile. And I hate the term "progressive" when every new band on the block clones some Meshuggah and Katatonia riffs and calls themselves "creative". Not buying it. Give me my Queensryche! This album really surprised me, and I'm sure they'll be quite the force to be reckoned with 1 or 2 albums later.

  4. Scott Kay wrote:

    I have to admit, the style in which this review was written was seriously over-the-top pretentious. Jesus Christ man, make your reviews READABLE. I couldn't care less about your abundant vocabulary: the focus here is to make some points about the album in a clear, and relate-able way, that can help listeners decide whether the CD is good or not. It's not an exercise in written masturbation like the drivel you have written here.

  5. Tom Still wrote:

    Everyone’s comments are hilarious. Just because someone uses a few words which you struggle to understand, you shouldn’t put down their opinion due this.

    While I do not agree with what this guy has to say, it is his opinion and you can’t call someone’s opinion as wrong.

  6. Zhi Zhu Wang wrote:

    what english school did you go to buddy? they should close that shit down, or at least rip up your degree

  7. hell wrote:

    wow..alec mckay. You sir,have just reached new height in faggot-ness.Nu-Metalcore eh?how about nu-metalcore up yours?
    tesseract is brilliatn,you probably havent heard much of djent..which makes you ineligible to write this review.
    Lets see how many thesaurus references you can own me with now

  8. Mark Bushnoe wrote:

    especially when his point is right, and TesseracT overstayed their welcome before they even released anything. The 5 years we were given off as listeners was plenty of time to expose the frailties of their music, and releasing rehashed material isn't really going to impress anyone when the genre has turned into such a stagnant, youtubey gimmick shithole. If you can't stand reading reviews like this, that is fine, but take that sentiment, put it into words and then send it to me so I can use it for a review for half of the "djent" that is coming out today.

    The bottom line is that TesseracT is five years too late, and didn't up their game in that time, or even work out the kinks in their music. I still spin the EP from time to time and it is enjoyable, but it is hardly worthy of top "progressive metal album" status. There is a reason the Periphery review got a 9.7 and this got a 5.5. It's hardly that people here hate djent, but "thats so djenty bro" isnt everything when reviewing an album.

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