Sunday, March 15, 2015

Live: Ex Hex @ Six D.O.G.S (Athens, March 11, 2015)

Ex Hex closed their European tour last Wednesday with their first ever show in Athens, at the small but inviting Six D.O.G.S club. Despite her long history before Ex Hex, with some great bands like Wild Flag, Helium or Autoclave and as a solo artist, this was also Mary Timony's debut live performance here, a fact that shows the exceptional success that Timony is currently enjoying with her new band.

This success has a lot to do with the melodic power and joyful energy that runs through all the songs that make up "Rips", the wonderful Ex Hex debut which found a place in many of 2014's end-of-the-year album lists (and at the No. 10 of ours).

Mary Timony always had a unique talent for melody, writing tunes that even at their most twisted and otherworldly found a way to worm into your ears and stick to your head for days. Her work with Helium is the best example of this, with 1997's "The Magic City" being essential listening for anyone who appreciates idiosyncratic pop that thinks outside the box.

Her teaming up in Ex Hex with the killer rhythm section of Betsy Wright and Laura Harris and the desire to write simple, energetic songs that conjure the spirits of glam rock, punk and power pop by combining melody and power gave us "Rips", perhaps her most immediate and catchy album to date.

Every song on this album was included in their small but perfectly formed 45-minute live set, a testament to the power of the record's material, and as bonus we also got to hear a new one (that may or may not be called "Greasy Wheel"). 

It's certainly not easy to single out highlights in such a tight, expertly executed set, but the way they stretched "Beast" from a three-minute power pop gem to a six-minute monster guitar jam, reveals that Ex Hex certainly have a lot more tricks up their sleeve than what they may have led you to believe! I think we can expect some very interesting twists and turns in their next steps!

Check out "Beast" below, as well as "Waterfall" which they kept for the encore of their set:

Ex Hex - Beast, live in Athens

Ex Hex - Waterfall, live in Athens

Mary Timony / Ex Hex
The show opened with the noisy, garage rock tunes of The Dark Rags, who earlier this year released their second album "Paranoia Blues". Find out more about them here.

The Dark Rags

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