Textures Return to India One Last Time
On their farewell tour across Europe, drummer Stef Broks talks about their last ever show and future plans
After confirming shows in Shillong and Bengaluru in October, Dutch metallers Textures realized they had one more offer from India—a slot at Bacardi NH7 Weekender’s Pune edition, between December 8th and 10th. That was an entire week after their officially announced last show in Tilburg as part of their farewell tour.
Drummer Stef Broks says over the phone from Utrecht, “We even had a meeting about it. We said, ‘If there’s one country that deserves this honor, it’s India.’ We just decided to go for it. If it was probably any other country, we’d just cancel it.”
When Textures announced in May it would dissolve by the end of 2017, there was the Last Miles to the Moon tour dates across Europe, and fans in India hoped the band would stop by the country they’ve been playing in regularly since their 2009 debut at Deccan Rock Festival in Bengaluru. Broks says, “We knew it was possible to go to India as well.”
The idea of Textures calling it quits, however, still remains surprising for fans, considering the band has been at their peak since delivering albums like Silhouettes in 2008. One of the immediate and most toughest decisions the band had to make was discarding their upcoming album Genotype, which was the companion to their 2016 album Phenotype. Broks likens it to an unfinished diptych. “We wrote this whole album to last for at least four or five years—the whole Genotype and Phenotype albums. Now only half of it will remain and yeah… that definitely feels like a bummer, but artistically, it’s not fulfilled,” he says. While work was already underway on Genotype, Broks says there’s no way that any of that material will see the light of day, especially if they are still in demo form. “We’re not releasing a half-finished album. It really feels shit. That’s when we are really hard-asses to ourselves,” he says.
When they put up a Facebook poll asking fans to pick songs for their farewell tour setlist, Broks says it’s no surprise that the top votes went to songs off Silhouettes, an album even he considers their breakout. The drummer adds, “The guys from [prog metal bands] Periphery, Animals as Leaders and Tesseract—although they knew us before—are quite influenced by this very album. It’s this album that will be represented well in our setlist at the shows.”
Performing at Bacardi NH7 Weekender in Shillong on October 28th and then at the Express edition of the festival in Bengaluru on October 29th, followed by the Pune edition between December 8th and 10th, Textures are ending their career in a place where they’ve accrued many memories. Broks says with a laugh, “I think what was surprising for us was that a lot of people kneeled down when we came over there [the first time]. They went, ‘Oh you’re Stef! You’re here and you’re like a god.’ You have to know, we are coming from a country here in Western Europe that is very, very sober. We don’t believe in rockstars here at all.”
Maybe that’s why bowing out is also not such a big deal for the band, even though Broks says it currently feels “really weird” to think that Textures will stop in a few months. He adds, “In the past few months, we’ve not been very busy with the band. That feels really strange, because for so many years, we’ve always been practicing, working on this band to raise the platform, for us to make music with this band. Now the idea is finally settling in that we are going to stop.” The drummer says it’s a shift into melancholy but also into “peacefulness.”
Following the end of the tour, Broks will continue his work in his music school in Utrecht, conduct drum clinics and classes as well as teach at an art school. There’s little chance that he’ll be part of a new project or supergroup, though. “We reached all the heights artistically, at least for ourselves. We wrote all the songs we had in mind. I can assure you that these songs were there already when we were teenagers. I met Bart [Hennephof, guitarist] when I was 13 years old. These songs were already there, but it just came out during Textures. At this moment, it feels like this big task is done, so what can we do?”
While he’s likely to take up any offers as a sessions musician, Broks says he’ll be concentrating on the business side of things from here on out. “I’m working as an entrepreneur for my business here and that’s really nice— that’s half of my job. The other half is being a teacher. I have my kids, my house, so that’s all going to continue.”
Textures India 2017
October 27th – Bacardi NH7 Weekender, Meghalaya
October 29th – Indiranagar Club, Bengaluru w/Skyharbor
December 8th – 10th – Bacardi NH7 Weekender, Pune
Watch the video for “Awake”