Ex Hex

Ex Hex – Its Real (album review)

by Woody on March 22, 2019

Photo – Michael Lavine

Rock meets roll on a fantastic follow up to 2014’s Rips. This album stays true to the debut; a garage-punk album built on meaty riffs; but opens the palette a bit. It feels as if there’s more space and time throughout the album, almost as if they don’t feel as rushed to get their message across. The

Diamond Drive is pure class; Mary Timony’s guitar work is pure magic and the breathy harmonies are so well done. Cosmic Cave is another gem; like The Ronettes playing some sort of spaced out garage rock. Towards the back end, Radiate really illustrates that space-time continuum I mentioned in the first paragraph. Just a brilliant track made by pros.

It feels weird to say that Ex Hex had a sound after just one album, but I’ll say it nonetheless. On their sophomore album, they took that sound; added a few elements and made it better.

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Ex Hex is here

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Ex Hex announce It’s Real for 3/22 release

by Woody on January 10, 2019

Photo – Michael Lavine

Last year Ex Hex played here in Chicago and I couldn’t believe that it had been nearly 5 years since their excellent debut, Rips, had been released. But that show gave me hope that new Ex Hex music was on the horizon. And today my hopes were fulfilled. It’s Real will see the light of day via the fine folks at Merge on 3/22. Here’s some info from their website.

On It’s Real, the group’s forthcoming second album, Ex Hex’s commitment to larger-than-life riffs and unforgettable hooks remains intact, but the garage-y, post-punk approach that defined Rips has grown in scale and ambition. What started as a reaction to the blown-out aesthetic of Rips would test the sonic limits of the power trio and lead the band on a quest for a more immersive and three-dimensional sound. Vocal harmonies are layered ten tracks deep, solos shimmer and modulate atop heaving power chords, and the codas linger and stretch toward new frontiers of sound. On first listen, you might think you’ve unearthed a long-lost LP carved from the space where crunch-minded art rock and glitter-covered hard rock converge, an event horizon at the intersection of towering choruses and swaggering guitars.

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Ex Hex is here

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Ex Hex – Rips [album review]

by Woody on October 7, 2014

ExHex

I recently had the displeasure of being involved in a conversation of how hot J-Lo looked in her new video for a crap-tastic tune titled Booty. Are you fucking kidding me? Who cares? I had recently become privy to Rips by the female trio of Ex Hex. So I chimed in, “You know what I find sexy? Three women playing their own instruments for songs they wrote themselves as they blare through a set of punk.” If you find yourself agreeing with me, then Rips is for you.

I had the pleasure of catching their SXSW set at Waterloo Records on a sun-soaked day. The trio comprised of Mary Timony, Laura Harris and Betsy Wright blazed a 45 minute set that showcased their experience. This wasn’t some indie buzz band of newbies, these ladies were pros and veterans. And Rips bottles that set in a nice package that is provided to you by the fine folks of Merge.

The tunes are short and dynamic. The writing and playing is crisp. Harmonies work like a charm. It is an energetic 35 minutes that bristles with the energy that makes punk music fun to listen to. Characters abound throughout the album. My favorites are Hot and Cold, Don’t Wanna Lose and Waterfall. Timony was part of the all-female super group Wild Flag. I had been pining for a second album from them. Ex Hex’s debut made that feeling go away.

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Ex Hex is here

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Ex Hex to release Rips on 10/7

by Woody on September 2, 2014

ExHex

Ex Hex put on a damn great set of music during SXSW at Waterloo Records. Up until that time, I had heard only track but their set of edgy set combining power-pop and punk completely won me over. Check out two of the tracks below. Here is some info from Merge.

Ex Hex is Mary Timony, Laura Harris, and Betsy Wright. They are a power trio hailing from Washington, DC, making the music you’ve been waiting for. Drums, bass, guitar, P90s, searing leads—this is unapologetic rock ’n’ roll spat out in the discipline’s mother tongue.

Mary found Laura Harris (The Aquarium, Benjy Ferree) and they hit it off immediately. Laura is a monster on drums: intuitive, solid, and just a bit rough around the edges. The pair played together for a couple of months in a tiny carpet-lined practice space shared with half a dozen hardcore bands and what appeared to be the better part of a B.C. Rich Mockingbird.

In walked Betsy Wright from the wilds of Virginia. She and Mary have similar tendencies, both defaulting to denim and The Voidoids. Betsy is a performer and an ace piano player, and before long, she was slinging a cherry SG as the third member of Ex Hex.

The group played a handful of shows and a couple of months later, in the spring of 2014, headed into the studio. Working furiously, they recorded over the span of two weeks in North Carolina with Mitch Easter (Let’s Active) and in the basement of Mary’s home with frequent collaborator Jonah Takagi. Bobby Harlow (The Go, Conspiracy of Owls) was tapped to mix because of his unique take on making rock records.

What results is Ex Hex Rips, twelve songs about underdogs, guys stealing your wallet, schoolyard brawls, and getting bent. The record happens pretty quickly, so don’t blink.

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Ex Hex signs with Merge Records; releases Hot and Cold 7″

February 11, 2014

Ex Hex are a new band signed to Merge Records. They are a DC-based power-trio featuring Mary Timony, Betsy Wright, and Laura Harris. Upon joining the Merge roster, Mary had this to say – “Ex Hex is what your older brother’s friends listened to. “Roxy Roller” and “Virginia Plain” rumbling from the Kenwood in the […]

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