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Hexvessel - Iron Marsh

Iron Marsh
by Salvador Aguinaga II at 29 April 2013, 2:35 PM

Gaining a lot of knowledge in a short amount of time is commendable. However, such an incessant rush leaves eras of importance behind. Granted before me is HEXVESSEL’s EP, “Iron Marsh”, a follow-up of 2012’s “No Holier Temple”. I learned about them vicariously through another reviewer within our little circle. Alas, when I saw HEXVESSEL alive and well for the taking, I did not hesitate to tame and fiddle with them myself. I have no deities before me but ironically I felt unworthy to review such a piece of work. It’s terrific alright but I’m tangled in a pit of ignorance and mild exploration. Progressive Rock is a magnificent genre, especially during the 60s and 70s, but along those lines I was unspeakable then and even my latent parents were toddlers in diapers. I couldn’t tell you anything specific other than these decades were full of promise and exploration. I have not gotten into much depth and therefore I feel unworthy. Nonetheless, I will grovel to your knees if you know more about it than me.

“Masks Of The Universe” is the biggest portion you will receive on your salivary palate. It tinges your tastes buds with three arrays of flavor seethed with different leaves and spices. It begins with what Varg Vikernes (BURZUM) himself could have composed. It helps Captain Kvohst has had affiliation with Black Metal. Then such an allusion is slightly dispersed when other instruments are justifying and amplifying the sound like a symphony would during its initial introduction, perhaps a bit amateurish but effective as if a high school band were trudging along to a coordinated practice seminar. The mid-section of the song presented somewhat in comparison to early-DEEP PURPLE (for lack of a more liable act). In the third segue; Captain Kvohst had a passionate rapport with Maynard James Keenan and his band TOOL in similarity. While the latter had its roots more toward an Alternative Rock sound, the former had a natural taste for Folk music in coherence. The organization was splendid and it progressed just as a symphony orchestra with experience. It’s tranquil and transitions as a bee, flower to flower, but at subtle moments it would be akin to a frog leaping from lily pad to lily pad.

“Superstitious Currents” teaches a lesson to all the masses who listen to lyric-concentrated simplicity. This, too, is more focused on vocal dependency but its approach is renowned and pierced with integrity. A lot of times in the aforementioned acts instruments are a background nuisance providing an elementary formula and hooking one with a bland melody. It’s not the issue with “Currents”; it’s an interactive piece with actual support from the instruments. They convey the vocalist’s deepest emotions and sweep the overfilling dust in lucid patterns in the surrounding air. It’s like a ventriloquist with no strings attached; the marionettes are synchronizing because their master has been very caring not because of paralyzed control. This is where my ignorance begins to show without my ability to channel the era of music I have in mind. This whole act is like in one of those vintage shows where a beautiful woman in a long velvet dress captures the eye of every man in the house. A beacon one cannot help but hone onto, changing trajectories if need be. In this case the woman is a man and yes his voice is quite alluring even for a heterosexual lad. On its final writings before its leave, the string instruments ferry sadness drenched in mystery.

Both “Tunnel at the End of the Light (Redux)” and “Don’t Break The Curse” brandish and open the lid on a discovery towards Doom Metal. The former invokes the birth of the blues during the 1920s in regards to vocal work. Oh how it reminded me of Bessie Smith, the Empress of the Blues; her spirit imprinting onto the Captain. At last, the latter was HEXVESSEL’s finest display of complete originality and domestication of their abilities. Alia O'Brien becomes one with her center as she projects Native American folklore onto the eyes of the wandering. She does this by playing a gentle wave on her flute. Extravagance is absent and ancestral blood is wept onto this number. Later, the tempo changes and it leads to one of the most memorial conclusions ending a record. 

4 Star Rating

1. Masks of the Universe
2. Superstitious Currents
3. Tunnel at the End of the Light (Redux)
4. Woman of Salem (Yoko Ono cover)
5. Don’t Break the Curse
Niini - Bass
Jukka - Drums
Vesa - Guitars
Simo Kuosmanen - Guitars
Jussi  -Organ, Samples
Kimmo - Violin
Marja Konttinen - Vocals (additional)
Captain Kvohst - Vocals, Guitars

Guest Musicians:

Alia O'Brien - Flute (on "Don't Break the Curse")
Rosalie Cunningham - Vocals (on "Woman of Salem")
Record Label: Svart Records


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