TESSERACT commonly receive the esteemed title “pioneers of djent”, a controversy of a genre in metal community. With former vocalist Tompkins having returned for their third LP, “Polaris“, the menu is already starting to be yummy but let’s see if the chefs serve it right.
Extending from excellent progressive djent-strumentation to melodic contrasts with bombastic screams, TESSERACT’s sound unveils its dynamic range already on opening track “Dystopia”. Guest vocalist Martin Grech appears on the gradually building tower of sounds that is “Hexes”. “Survival” continues the flow forming a subliminal opening trilogy of songs.
TESSERACT is no stranger to motion of sound and on “Tourniquet” the Steven Wilson-like harmonic sequences are more than present and fit quite perfectly as the interlude between the first three songs and the rest of the record.
Some curious resemblance and tribute to Faith No More/Rage against The Machine on the last 2 minutes of “Utopia” and follow up “Phoenix” being one song with its own identity within this album. On “Messenger”, the first track that the band unveiled from the album, Tesseract unveil their strength in terms of rhythmic suspense and tension. While two ending tracks, “Cages” and “Seven Names,” lean towards the softer side of their sound.
TESSERACT on “Polaris” manage to maintain their sound core and identity, on their own roots, without looking anywhere else. With their music being quite confusing to me, with their vocal melodies that wave on the air, being something unique but obscure to the ears and definitely not something easy to follow on any term! It should also be noted the chosen record label, K Scope (known from Steven Wilson etc.) may be indicative of both the experimental prog-rock/metal essence of their music on this one.
For fans this might have been really good but to the average listener I guess not. Choose your side and observe!
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