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HeXen
State Of Insurgency
January 2009
Released: 2008, Old School Metal Records
Rating: 3.5/5
Reviewer: Munkwunk

Hexen is a relative newcomer to the Los Angeles thrash metal scene, but they have already begun to make a name for themselves with their first full-length album, STATE OF INSURGENCY. Singer and bassist Andre Hartoonian is all that remains of the band's original line-up from 2003, but the current crew consists of talented artists who deliver the power and speed of L.A. thrash metal.



STATE OF INSURGENCY is fifty-six minutes and three seconds of non-stop metal, which only slows down for the thirteenth and final track, aptly titled "Outro", which is a slower instrumental piece that wraps up the album in a nice melodic fashion. The rest of the album is full of frenzied riffing, shredding solos, and the occasional war-time sound bite. The overall quality of music here is in league with other thrashers such as Exodus and Testament, but there isn't much to say flat vocals which deliver the politically-inspired lyrics in a less-than-pleasing manner. The band's vocalist isn't completely a drag, though; he delivers a killer bass performance throughout the album and is to be commended for a job well done on that front.



While STATE OF INSURGENCY may not be the best thrash album of its time, it shows that the band has a lot of potential that will surely be realized in the coming years. Fans of the genre will surely be pleased by the killer musicianship on which the band thrives and will definitely want to pick up this album. Others may be turned off by the bland vocals, but if you can put those aside you will find that Hexen's brand of metal is worth checking out.
Track Listing

1. Blast Radius
2. Gas Chamber
3. Past Life
4. Knee Deep in the Dead
5. Intro...Chaos Aggressor
6. Bedlam Walls
7. The Serpent
8. No More Color
9. Mutiny & Betrayal
10. Seditions in Peacetime
11. Desolate Horizons
12. State of Insurgency
13. Outro

Lineup

Andre Hartoonian – Vocals/Bass
James Lopez – Guitars
Ronny Dorian - Guitars
Carlos Cruz - Drums


Next review: » Hexis Abalam - Abalam
Previous review: » HeXeN - State of Insurgency





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