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TesseracT - Sonder

Label: KSCOPE
Format: Download
Released: 2018
Reviewed By: Jack Mangan
Rating: 9/10


TesseracT’s 2018 Sonder album is pretty excellent, straightforward Prog Metal, sure to be met with applause and appreciation from their target audiences, and a shrug from the rest of the world with less-discerning tastes. . . i.e.; if you dig Katatonia, Dream Theater, Symphony X, Fates Warning, Animals as Leaders, and maybe Tool(?), you’ll likely be a fan.

 

I will say that there’s a warmth in the music that is often missing from their rigidly technical peers (not a cut on any of the bands mentioned in the previous paragraph). “Orbital” is a lovely, almost Devin Townsend-like, dreamy beach, with light synth notes, reverb, washed-out percussion, and Daniel Tompkins’ gentle voice. This a place they revisit a few times on Sonder, notably last song, “The Arrow,” and the start of the build-up in “Mirror Image.” I’m not done yet talking about “Orbital,” though, because goddamn, it leads as an intro to the fucking masterful opening riff to “Juno,” which is so fucking incredible, it reduces intelligent reviewers to profanity and run-on sentences. The slap-bass in the verses juxtaposes brilliantly against the heavy single-note processional of the intro and chorus riff.
TesseracT may sometimes be guilty of odd time signatures just to show off, but this is a forgivable offense, especially when they’re done this well. “Juno” is the clear highlight of the album, but I also quite like “Luminary.”

 
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