Fresh off their extensive reissue of 2013's progressive classic Altered State, U.K. tech-metal favorites TesseracT have announced "P O R T A L S," a five-act cinematic streaming experience that promises to blow minds when it premieres on December 12th. Ahead of the event, Revolver hit up guitarist James Monteith to get his picks for the "top five djent bands."
"Back when TesseracT first started, there were a number of bands that played a key role developing the scene and sound," he tells us. "Periphery, Monuments, etc. need to have these bands in their musical library, too. There were plenty more artists that made great music back then, but these are five that spring to mind now!"
A one-man project. Paul Ortiz's mix of Eighties sci-fi soundtracks, Nineties progressive metal and modern Meshuggah-inspired riffs were a game-changer. Paul has come back into the fold recently, working with Dan Tompkins on his latest record. Check out 2009's At the Dream's Edge.
Crushingly brutal, both tonally and rhythmically, this band were pushing sonic extremes ahead of most. Guitarist Josh Travis' signature dissonant lead sound was super pioneering at the time, too. Check out 2010's Danza III.
Another one-man project. Ben Sharp sat on the periphery of the scene, but his sound was undeniably a fit, with his creation of big guitar-driven soundscapes and approach to rhythm. As far as I'm aware, he only took the project live once, when the members of Intranaut learned all his music and said, "OK, we can play this stuff, so let's go do this!" He went out on a U.S. tour with Intranaut and TesseracT. Check out 2010's Beacons.
One of the greatest exports from the Netherlands. This band were huge pioneers in the prog-metal game in the '00s, and were a big influence on TesseracT. Make sure to check out 2009's Drawing Circles.
This band was the starting point for the U.K. scene, and as well as Acle (TesseracT), it featured members of Monuments and Heart of a Coward. Check out their 2009 album, The Hidden Words, or if you want to go really old school, 2005's The Double A EP.