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Are Textures the most underrated tech-metal band?

Textures helped pioneer tech metal, yet have remained in the shadows of the scene. After a five-year delay, they’re returning with a double album that’s set to seal their legacy

During the making of Textures’ fifth album, a day came that would change the course of the band. A day where Stef Broks, founding member and drummer of the influential Dutch tech metallers, forced each member to stop work and take a long, hard look at the road they’d travelled, and envisage what lay ahead.

“I had to halt the guys and say, ‘Listen, do we really want to make just another album? Or do we want to do something completely different?’” remembers Stef. “I knew we couldn’t just write 10 songs for a new record and think that was going to be enough. This is our fifth album, and traditionally that’s a very important step for a band. It’s where reputations are cemented. We could carry on as normal, or we could really strive to make a statement. So we made the decision – we were going to make something that would make the fans sit up and take notice. Something we’d never even attempted before.”

Formed in 2001, Textures combined melodic death, industrial and groove metal to create a sound that aligned with the emerging tech metal scene, and what would later be labelled ‘djent’. Debut Polars (2003), and follow-up Drawing Circles (2006), were embraced by the underground, as the band slowly but surely built up a reputation for innovation. But despite the acclaim, many newer technical bands lately including the likes of Periphery and Tesseract gradually rose past Textures, playing bigger venues and selling more records. Lineup changes also led to an unfortunate five-year gap between last album Dualism and today. And that decision Textures made? It was to write an ambitious double album, Phenotype and Genotype, which they hope will become their magnum opus.

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