Ask John Q. Fourtrack, and he’ll say he’s an experimenter and an artist. The Hex, however, says nothing and then rips your fucking ears off.
The liner notes are terse to the point of being deliberately vague; even the band photos are fuzzy and nearly generic. The songs, likewise, maintain a dogged simplicity, which belies the depth of the group’s structure. Most of the songs on this five-track EP have two or three parts total, but each part is essentially a whole new song, with a different key, atmosphere, and tonal pattern. They borrow heavily from early ’80s no-wave and early ’90s touch-&-go punk. The bassist locks down a rolling, repetitive, shellac-like line, backed by some amazing technical drumming. Jagged guitars and a barely in-control singer round out the sound.
The Hex’s songs are short: all five are under three minutes. That way, even failures like the painfully formless “Over the Radio” are over quickly. The other four songs reach out to you and get you involved in the chaos before they pull the rug out from under you. Your ass moves even as your mind thinks, and this is essential for experimental rock ‘n’ roll to succeed.