Era Hex – New Aeon EP

One of the brightest flames in European industrial metal in the past couple of years has come in the muscular shape of German band Diehard. They easily marked themselves as a band destined to have a say on the future of the genre with their album When Illusions Gone, an acclaimed release whose tracks found eager attention and airplay with the likes of The Reputation Radio Show. Comprising of Alexander Morte (Vocals/guitar) and Vic Torys (keys) the band has been quiet over recent months though Morte is always a perpetually creating storm as shown by the recent release of the debut EP from his excellent electrocore project Red Code: Revolution. The reason for the apparent step back into the shadows for the band has now come to light with the outstanding and impressive New Aeon EP from Era Hex.

Era Hex is the evolution of Diehard. It is not a band spawn from the ashes of its predecessor as Diehard did not die but the natural and impressive progression. Morte and Torys return with a heightened brew of their dark industrial sound, a fresh corrupting blend of death metal and electronic blood distilled in a symphonic air. The music still has that sharp consuming industrial air but it has grown and matured into its own unique hungry entity and one has to say it is something rather special as declared by New Aeon. Whilst still Diehard the duo added drummer Sascha ‘Quazar’ Pratnekar (ex-Deathronation, Necropsy) to their ranks and it was as the trio started writing songs and the realization that something new was emerging that the band changed their name to Era Hex.  Soon after the threesome became four when bassist Jochen (Svarta Faran) was recruited and the band found its whole.

The EP is made up of three hungry and stirring tracks rippling with invention and imagination without losing the power and intensity they are known for. The music it has to be said is strikingly elevated in quality to what came before and it was pretty mighty then. The opening track Era Hex gives immediate proof to that thought with its twisting crisp striding riffs bursting through the ear off of an initial atmospheric symphonic air. The production is cleaner than previous releases from the older incarnation of the band which allows the adventurous electronic aspects to erupt and light up the death march of intensity and blackened guitar work much more and to great effect. Vocally the delivery is a mix of death and black metal interplay full of malevolence from the darkest heart and is at times contrasted magnificently by the symphonic caresses from the voice of Torys. The overall effect is a song which leaves one enthralled and eager for more.

Off to a great start the release soon backs it up with the manipulative and sinister title track. With the vocals brewing a storm of spite and venom within a weave of warm synth conjuration the song intrigues the senses with incendiary sonics and waspish riffs which squeeze the synapses tighter and tighter as they prey upon the ear. The song evolves throughout adding more and more textures to its weight including a mesmeric Eastern flavouring to its blackened and scorched melodic breath whilst the intensity lies heavier and more firmly upon the senses.

The release is completed by Till The End, its herald on epic sounding chimes the lead into a majestic melodic atmosphere speared with predatory riffs and hypnotic intrusive rhythms from Pratnekar. As the track crawls permeates every corner it infiltrates the ear with scurrying sonics which whip skin and synapses with relish to bring an extra persistent and niggling treat within the corruption of malevolence. The song is the best of the trio as well as the most experimental though all stretch and explore with imagination their boundaries and hearts.

The New Aeon EP is not only the welcome return of artists which previously excited and gave some important moments for the ear to enjoy but also the beginning of something even more powerful and special. Given the evidence of the release it equally feels like Era Hex is ready to emerge from their previous respected standing to become a new force in European metal.

RingMaster 11/07/2012

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Redcode:Revolution : The System Has Fallen EP

Renowned for his industrial metal sounds with Diehard, a band that has become a firm fixture on the Reputation Radio Shows, Alexander Morte has turned 2012 into an energised year of creativity from himself starting with the alternative electrocore music project Redcode: Revolution. The debut release from the band comes in the shape of The System Has Fallen EP, a thumping and stirring three track storm of absorbing and diverse electronic music, deeply aggressive vocals, and equally challenging lyrics.

Nürnberg based Morte alongside Diehard has also captured the imagination of a great many with his solo instrumental work as well as finding acclaim as a freelance composer, film musician and producer. The immediate future is set for the unleashing of his metal band Era Hex and EBM project Error:Genesis as well as this release, Morte a man who seemingly never takes a breath but consistently maintains a high and continually inventive surge of imagination and artistic skill as proven by The System Has Fallen EP.

The promo sheet attached to the release states ‘RC:R is a scream of the ghost flying above the ruins of post apocalyptic world!’ and that is exactly the feel and overbearing imagery one gets whilst within the intrusive yet hypnotic soundscapes, the sense of worlds and lives left in chaos and husks of a once prosperous energy from the fallout of power and greed. Apart from the proposed apocalyptic future premise the EP is centered on the now and hits hard with its dramatic theme.

The EP opens on a siren, its wail opening up the ears to the electric venomous sounds bleeding through the air from the start of opener Red Code Revolution. With excellent female harmonic cries with a great Eastern ambience warming the bristling atmosphere the track stomps across the senses with an immediate infectious breath. Pulsating and vibrant it stirs the emotive elements of thought as the song leads hypnotically into its intense heart. Once Morte brings his harsh and combative vocals into the song the shift in energy is definite, the track and lyrics challenging and inciteful. The song though blends the beauty and the fight within the song in a clean and seamless weave, the senses finding themselves abused and exhilarated in one flowing and captivating intrusion.

The following Chemtrails initially skirts the ear with skittish electro pulses as melodic murmurs form an alliance with the senses. This almost subdued entrance soon digs into its intense depths to expand into gut punching vehemence and dazzling sirenesque infection. The track offers up a chorus as insistent as it is anthemic and is destined to trigger mass limbed responses. It also acts as a powerful aural spark in inciting the imagery of organised gang salutes of world forces in history and arguably for revolution, the essence of the EP.

It is that aspect of the release which is as satisfying as the sounds, the premise and intent is strong yet not forced down the throat but it is the music and its structure which lights up the imagination before the powerful portrayal and inspiring defiant commentary.

The System Has Fallen closes with the equally outstanding Electrocore Devision ensuring the release is fully impressive from start to finish. The song once more wonderfully meshes anger and tension with glorious sonic waves of irresistible sounds but this time brings a stronger industrial presence. The great repetitive chorus has a Rammstein feel to add extra muscle to the enveloping contagion elsewhere and at times seemingly teases with eighties electronic suggestions for extra spice.

The EP is outstanding and though already aware and a fan of the work of Morte, The System Has Fallen has surprised and surpassed expectations going into it. The EP is sure to excite industrial/harsh EBM/electro fans as well as metal ones everywhere and with an album already well into its creation the revolution is nigh, the Redcode: Revolution.

Listen out for a Bone Orchard industrial/electro podcast special featuring amongst others Redcode: Revolution coming soon from The Reputation Radio Show.

RingMaster 28/06/2012

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