Monday, June 22, 2009

Another Crucial Blast..

"Hell yes, I've been looking forward to hearing the new Hex Machine for awhile, it came out earlier this spring but took us awhile to finally get it in stock...I loved their debut album, a crunchy slab of Am Rep worshipping mathy sludge-rock that stomped all over me when I first heard it. I can never get enough of that classic old school noise rock sound that was perfected by bands like Unsane, Cherubs, Hammerhead, early Today Is The Day, etc., and while there has been a huge resurgence in this sound lately, few bands have channeled it and bent it into their own image as well as Richmond's Hex Machine. Omen Mas delivers nine songs of massive lumbering heaviness, super distorted guitars grinding out catchy riffs buried under piles of murky low end and howling feedback, Trevor Thomas yowling over it all with his distorted snarl that kinda sounds like a brattier Chris Spencer from Unsane, the raw production giving this a real vintage sound, and yet there's nothing here to suggest that Hex Machine are merely paying homage to this era of underground rock...they take it and shape it into a seething, slow-building monster, injecting a greasy psychedelic quailty to the guitar leads, the often anthemic riffs building into cathartic high points that bludgeon you at the same time that the hook burrows into yer skull, and throwing around big armfuls of plodding doomy trudge. There are some immensely heavy jams on here, like the short two-minute rager "Pink Whiskey" and the pummeling sludge-rock of "Vivisection", but the band is really on fire when they dig into an extended tension building exercise like the eight minute "Godheads Full Of Candy". There's an angular quality to their riffs that makes this more complex than yer regular Am Rep cult, more metallic too, with hefty levels of ultra-heavy sludginess anchoring most of these tracks to the ground. Bone crushing noise-streaked thuggery that fits right in between the likes of Unsane, Halo Of Flies, Jesus Lizard, Bleach era Nirvana, early Shellac and Hammerhead - if any of these bands turn yer crank, then this is a no-brainer.--Crucial Blast

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