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Album Reviews : The Levitation Hex – The Levitation Hex

By on April 6, 2013

347643Despite an apparent entry requirement of coming from a band starting with ‘A’, Adam Agius, formerly of Alchemist, ditched the ‘A’ and created The Levitation Hex. The band has in turn taken the A-Z of great metal, rock and more to create one monstrous beast of a debut album (self titled).

While retaining much of the soul of the long-lived Alchemist, the record sounds fresh and exciting as the tornado approaches and picks you up to carry you swirling in its vortex before dropping you safely back to the ground. Then does it again, and again, and again, at each break dissolving into proggy bliss. This is the thing that I love so much about it – heavy, fierce, violent, punishing and yet it’s carrying you with an underlying camaraderie. It’s intention is not to beat the fuck out of you, but to be your gigantic mate at the pub who at the first sign of trouble tears the place up while you sit on his shoulder, then gets you another beer.

The other great thing about the record, no sorry make that just one other great thing about the record, is the way it screams for you to check the band out live. You just know this record would translate into a powerful and explosive set. And speaking of screaming, Agius has a great ability to create harsh vocals with melody and a wicked piercing scream. The songs are led by the vocals, backed up by thumping bass, hardcore drumming and layers of guitar. That guitar doesn’t rely on the layers alone to create the power it brings, with some cracking riffs and melodies, none of which are wasted.

The opener “The Longest Path Possible” starts with synth and slides into some melodic prog before launching into death metal elements with a whole lot of bounce. Try not to dance to this. “Scratch a Life, Find a Thief” is angry and thumping before collapsing to an incredible swirling amalgam of synth string and high-pitched guitar sounds with some simple straightforward melody, only to launch into “Depressedemic” with it’s fuzzy chugging and brilliant closing minute. “Dream Deficit” reminds me of great ’80s psych like Slikee Boys but with balls the size of grapefruits and takes the record out in much the same way as it starts.

So is it death metal, progressive metal, ’70s prog or psych rock, grunge, thrash, punk or even ’90s electronica? Well all of these but none at the same time. It’s more accurately described by that broadly encompassing genre known as “fucking incredible”. It’s 45-odd minutes that ends far too soon because you could listen to this kind of sound for hours. As I am right now…

Band: The Levitation Hex
Album: The Levitation Hex
Year: 2012
Genre: Psychedelic/Progressive Death Metal
Label: Independent
Origin: Canberra, Australia
http://levitationhex.net/

Track list:
1. The Longest Path Possible
2. Manipular
3. Scratch A Life, Find A Thief
4. Depressedemic
5. Internal Chatter
6. A Breathing Apparatus
7. Breaking Point
8. Flirting With Schizophrenia
9. Dream Defecit

About

A relatively recent convert to more extreme metal (not exclusively), I've always preferred non-commercial and progressive music to mainstream. I grew up in Adelaide, South Australia, where in my youth I lived for every new Greasy Pop Records release. I also write for ech(((o)))es & dust and ThisIsNotAScene but it's good to start contributing to an Australian metal site.