Review from METAL.IT

View original article: https://www.metal.it/album.aspx/41142/25052/hex-a-d-astro-tongue-in-the-electric-garden/


Translated to English:

The first thing that strikes you is the splendid cover created by Dave Patchett (illustrator best known for his work with Cathedral), only to discover that the Hex AD, unknown to me until now, boast important collaborations and have a fairly good discography consistent, which I dutifully prepare to deepen, given the surprising quality of this "Astro tongue in the electric garden".
Born from the cooperation between Rick Hagan (in the curriculum Paul Di'Anno, Blaze Bayley and Tim "Ripper" Owens ...) and the legendary producer Chris Tsangarides, the band acquires the current configuration over time and produces a truly impressive disk, in which made an interesting synthesis between hard-prog, doom and heavy psych, confirming Norway as one of the most dynamic and driving nations of the entire European rock scene.
Whoever imagines being faced with yet another team dedicated to a form of retro-rock didactic, I immediately address my heartfelt reassurance ... the Nordics operate an intriguing and vital operation of synthesis of the lesson handed down by the Masters, mixing with insight and taste Uriah Heep, Deep Purple, Black Sabbath, King Crimson, Pink Floyd and Jethro Tull, even coming to "disturb" vague reminiscences of the hard esoteric of the Finns Sarcofagus, a name for true "connoisseurs".
In short, the impression is that it is once again the "culture", together with talent, vocation and technical adequacy, to give the product the necessary dose of feeling capable of overcoming an annoyingly "scholastic" approach to the unfailing sounds typical of the genre.
After "Elle est mort", a short and jovial (?!) Intro, it's up to the creeping and majestic "Deadly nightshade" to forcefully attract the attention of those who love certain Cathedral (in a logic "closing the circle" ...), which , I am firmly convinced of this, they will only end up appreciating the subsequent “Astro tongue”, a quivering Heep / Purple interpolation of considerable suggestion.
"The day the sky exploded" adds shimmers of King Crimson and Jethro Tull to the fervent sonic mix, for a rather "impressive" result, while the role of the dreamy interlude "Au revoir jardin électrique" is to prepare the bystander for the full-bodied conclusion in three movements globally called "The moonsoon suite", developed between dark heavy-blues visions ("Hawks & doves", with Eirikur Hauksson, of Artch fame, and Thomas Tofthagen of Audrey Horne, as welcome guests), ("Old bones", in which Genesis and Pink Floyd emerge) and suffused and liquid chiaroscuro psych ("A stone for the bodies not found").
In reality, at least for the supporters of the CD and digital music, the epilogue of the program is entrusted to "Grace and pain", a good example of hazy proto-metal created with the contribution of Rowan Robertson (Dio, DC4).
Although showing some sporadic inspirational excess overall, it is not necessary to sharpen the senses excessively to understand the value of the Hex AD, strong in a very convincing and effective present, also able to reveal the concrete possibility of a future that further delineates their physiognomy expressive and artistic identity.