Tesseract (often stylized as TesseracT) is a British progressive metal band formed in 2007. They are currently signed to Century Media Records. They are credited as one of the bands to pioneer the 'djent' movement in progressive metal. As of 2013 Tesseract have released two studio albums, One and Altered State.
Tesseract started out in 2003 whilst founding member Acle Kahney was recording and writing with his band Mikaw Barish. What started as an outlet for creativity and experimentation grew and Kahney posted clips of his technically heavy guitar work on forums such as Sevenstring.org, taking the feedback on board and gradually improving his technique. It was in this way that a community of bedroom producer-musicians were spawned and a new wave of progressive music called djent was created. Others who helped to create this new "djent" scene include Misha Mansoor (Periphery), Paul Ortiz (Chimp Spanner), and John Browne (Monuments), who was a band mate of Kahney's in Fellsilent.
Frenchman Julien Perier supplied vocals during the bands' very early stages, but the logistical difficulties of distance meant that he could not join the band permanently. The line-up was completed in 2007 with Jay Postones on drums, James Monteith on guitar, and Amos Williams on bass. Monteith and Williams brought along with them Abisola Obasanya, the vocalist of their previous band, <209>. After their first full lineup was realized, they began playing live shows and compiling material for their debut album; they released a 4 song demo in 2007 containing parts of what would eventually become their debut album One.
The band plays a specific style of progressive metal which often features polyrhythmic riffs and odd time signatures, and several atmospheric layers. They have stated that they do not compose their music with specific polyrhythms in mind, and play what they feel fits the groove. They also include a mid-range sounding distorted guitar tone and melodic clean passages heavily influenced by ambient music. They are regarded as one of the pioneers of the djent subgenre of metal.
The vocal style of the band has seen a considerable shift. On One, Daniel Tompkins employed a mixture of clean and harsh vocals, with an emphasis on long, drawn out notes. However, Ashe O'Hara's performances on Altered State dropped the harsh vocals entirely in favour of a more melodic style, with an emphasis on strong melodic "hooks". In an interview with Metalspree, Ashe stated, '...right now, being ourselves is to have purely melodic vocals. With ‘One’ they felt they had to have harsh vocals in order to be accepted by the community. But, they’ve never really wanted to be that type of band.'
In his interview with Metal Injection, Amos Williams stated that the decision to drop harsh vocals entirely from future material was an unconscious collective decision by the band and this made the search for a new vocalist extremely hard; his explanation was that many vocalists with an all clean style do not want to live the "metal" lifestyle of regular touring, or do not enjoy metal music enough to want to take part in a band in TesseracT's style.
Throughout their career, the band have produced, mixed and mastered all their material themselves: Williams is a qualified audio engineer and Acle Kahney has carried out production, mixing and mastering work for several other progressive metal bands. They have also refrained from taking part in the loudness wars; instead, they use more gentle mastering which preserves the dynamics of their music.
Amos Williams stated in an interview that TesseracT's music is relatively reliant on the bass in comparison to other metal bands: he states that "[The bass] is always on its own little shelf" in the music and that during the production process "We left a lot of room for there to be sub and actual bass stuff going on".
Demos 1 - 2009
Demos 2 - 2009
One - 2011
Perspective - 2012
Altered State - 2013
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