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Hexvessel - All Tree review

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Band: Hexvessel
Album: All Tree
Release date: February 2019

01. Blessing
02. Son Of The Sky
03. Old Tree
04. Changeling
05. Ancient Astronaut
06. Visions Of A.O.S.
07. Sylvan Sign
08. Wilderness Spirit
09. Otherworld Envoy
10. Birthmark
11. Journey To Carnac
12. Liminal Night
13. Closing Circles

Folk and psychedelia have always gone hand in hand.

It's somewhat weird that out of all of Mat McNerney's (aka Kvohst) metal projects like Code or his time with Dødheimsgard or the even the not-metal-but-still-close goth rock of Beastmilk and Grave Pleasures, it is still likely that the psychedelic folk of Hexvessel is the one most instantly tied to his name. Arguably. But with bands of such cult status, being something that far away from metal and still being as popular among a genre renowned for its elitism is quite the achievement. So now, ten years after the project started, Hexvessel still stands tall and is ready to tell you the story of the All Tree.

What makes Hexvessel special is that, while a lot of the folk bands popular in the metal community are either inspired by '80s neofolk or big ensembles (yes, I know, they do count as this as well) of Nordic or Celtic folk, Hexvessel seem more inspired by late-'60s British folk music like Fairport Convention or The Incredible String Band or Nick Drake. And especially while listening to All Tree I have felt really similar to the experience of watching The Wicker Man for the first time (the original '70s one whose soundtrack has been credited as an influence to the neofolk genre, not the shitty Nicholas Cage one). So it feels great to have folk music that takes cues from the era where psychedelia was the norm and both were cooked in the same pot (pun intended).

The music doesn't feel apocalyptic or dark, at least not most of the time (see "Otherworld Envoy"), but rather reflective and nostalgic for olden times of childhood memories of hearing stories at the old farm. So having an entire ensemble of folk musicians does give a lot of strength and quite a triumphant vibe to the whole thing, from the percussion to the strings to the harmony in the vocals. There's still a distinctive emphasis on songwriting and having satisfying instrumental sections, but it's quite clear that the emphasis is on the storytelling itself. As is expected in folk music, whose main purpose is literally storytelling.

Perhaps a few decades late to the hippie revolution, Hexvessel are still the most fascinating of the artists who take cues from the era, successfully updating the sound to more modern times but keeping it as atemporal as it always was.

[No streaming link yet, but will provide when the album is released]

Written on 07.02.2019 by Doesn't matter that much to me if you agree with me, as long as you checked the album out.


Comments: 5   Visited by: 128 users
07.02.2019 - 20:48
Bad English
Tage Westerlund
Wise words about inspiration, like I said Evert bm band should gave a neo folk stuff. Nature folk music, heaten, hearitage are our roots. Only chosen will understand my words, wise man Words
Life is to short for LOVE, there is many great things to do online !!!

Stormtroopers of Death - ''Speak English or Die''

I better die, because I never will learn speek english, so I choose dieing
07.02.2019 - 20:54
JoHn DoE

Gotta keep an eye on this, I enjoyed their previous album.
I thought the two primary purposes for the internet were cat memes and overreactions.
07.02.2019 - 21:19
Tree-huggers unite?

07.02.2019 - 21:20
Written by nikarg on 07.02.2019 at 21:19

Tree-huggers unite?

Reminds me of this
Do you think if the heart keeps on shrinking
One day there will be no heart at all?
07.02.2019 - 21:22
Written by RaduP on 07.02.2019 at 21:20

Written by nikarg on 07.02.2019 at 21:19

Tree-huggers unite?

Reminds me of this


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