The opening bars of Hex underwhelm me, making me think of the current crop of 80s ‘new wave’ and/or ‘post-punk’ bands. However, things change when there’s a brief break with some rather impressive discordant guitar licks and it quickly marks itself out as more of a slice of hardcore edginess. B-sides ‘The Support’ and ‘Arch Standard’ luckily follow these, the former with some almost-mathrock tendencies and the yelled vocals replaced with a darker spoken feel.
The sound and production here is clever, all instruments clear but it feels like this is much more than a straight live recording: Various sounds and feels are dropped into the mix, and thankfully the songs are strong enough that it augments them, rather than make it look like someone’s trying too hard.
Packaging is a simple cardboard slipcase with an incomprehensible stamp of numbers and letters used over it, while the CD is printed with the minimum of information, no pictures or anything. The press release swings between amusing and cringe-inducing, but luckily the website eschews any of this in favour of some rather nice imagery.