San Marcos, Texas's Vex have returned with a new album that takes the melodic and progressive mixture of black and metal of previous recordings and expand on it by mixing in elements of folk, post punk and ambient and this is a review of their 2016 album "Sky Exile" which will be released in June by Eihwaz Recordings.
Distorted guitar drones start off the album along with some tribal beats and after the intro the music start going into more of a heavier musical direction along with some black metal screams and the riffs also bring in a great amount of melody and after awhile death metal growls make their presence known on the recording.
When guitar solos and leads are utilized they are done in a very melodic fashion and the clean guitars also gives the songs more of a progressive feeling while melodic vocals are also utilized at times and when the music speeds up a great amount of blast beats are utilized while the acoustic guitars bring in a touch of folk.
Some of the tracks are very long and epic in length and all of the musical instruments have a very powerful sound to them and as the album progresses elements of post ambient can be heard in certain sections of the recording and a couple of the tracks are all instrumental while some of the slower riffs bring in a touch of doom metal and the songs also bring in a great mixture of slow, mid paced and fast parts along with some of the faster riffs bringing in a small amount of tremolo picking and some songs also bring in a small amount of spoken word parts.
On this recording Vex remove the thrash elements that where present on previous recordings while keeping the melodic black and death metal style and taking it into more of a progressive direction on this recording and mixes in influences of folk, ambient and post punk to take their musical style to another level, the production sounds very professional while the lyrics cover dark, depressive and metaphysical themes.
In my opinion this is another great sounding recording from vex and if you are a fan of the progressive and melodic styles of black and death metal, you should check out this album. RECOMMENDED TRACKS INCLUDE "Empyrean" "The Cygnus Light" "Dark Skies Painted" and "August 11". 8 out of 10.