VEXVEX
Vitriolum
By: Sara Lambeth
Photos courtesy of: Seven Bear Photography

The first time I ever saw, or even heard of the band Vex, was at an Autumnís End show at the infamous Joeís Grotto in Phoenix Arizona.  I became a fan that night and gave my friends hell for not telling me about this band sooner. I donít want to put a predetermined judgment in anyoneís mind who has not heard Vex before by comparing their sound to another band. Vex sounds like Vex. I can say that if you like good music, then chances are you will like Vex.

Luckily for me, Vex is from Phoenix, so whenever they have a show, chances are I will be there. I believe it was my third time seeing Vex live that I realized the vocalist, who also plays the theremin, D.L. was someone I had met before and share several mutual friends with. D.L. on stage and D.L. off stage is two different people. When D.L. takes the stage, he combines fashion accessories that you donít see usually together and becomes the story teller, as well as the main character of his tales.

Backing up the vocals are musical badasses, Keith Heaney on drums, Jodiah Salinas on guitar, and Adam Rebeske, who plays the bass and the electric cello.  Being a violinist, I was very excited to see the addition of a cello and even more excited by the level of skill from Adam. He breaks the rules, playing the cello standing up, and the sound he creates with it is haunting, giving dark twist to a classical instrument.

Vex released their debut album, "Vitriolum" in April 2013 and I quickly became a proud owner. Rarely does the CD leave my player-- it is just that good. "Vitriolum" re-imagines the days of future past with music that is a theatrical play for your ears.  The production on this album is phenomenal.  First, you are met with "The Mouth,"  a 1:15 minute track of layered tones, various sounds and whispered voices that you can feel in your bones.  It transitions flawlessly into the second track, "Handbook for the Powerless."  The album follows a pattern of an interlude track followed by two full-length tracks. Each interlude gives a new feel and perception to the texture and multi-layered sounds in the songs that follow. The album is a combination of talented musicians where there is no need for flashy solos.

VEXOne of the cuts that really stands out to me is track 6, "Quiet."  D.L. has the control over his vocals to create emotions that are multi-dimensional.  "Quiet" combines resonating tones in with swelling and changing passages from cello to voice, making the overall feel quite intoxicating.  The song is driven by wickedly good drumming and the guitars knowing when to be full force and when to back off.  The entire album is a masterpiece. I strongly encourage a visit to their YouTube page to check out videos including live drum footage of "Quiet," the music video, "Handbook for the Powerless"  and the making of the album artwork.  Once youíve had a taste of Vex, you will need to experience "Vitriolum."

To find out more about VEX, and where to purchase "Vitriolum," click on the links below. 

https://twitter.com/VexPhoenix    http://www.facebook.com/Vexband

http://www.facebook.com/Vexphx    http://www.youtube.com/user/Vexphx    

https://itunes.apple.com/ke/album/vitriolum/id643021492

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