The Band: The Levitation Hex
Answers by: Adam Agius (vocals, guitars, programming)
The Levitation Hex is a band from Canberra (Australia), that debuted in 2012 with their fist album and this 2016 they have released the second effort, the cool “Cohesion”. They have signed by High Roller Records, another hint of their quality. This is the kind of band you can say that has his own sound or style. If you don’t know them yet, you can check by yourself at www.levitationhex.net At the least, you will listen to something new and fresh, fasten your sit belt and enjoy the travel.
Hello Adam, thank you for this chance to talk about your project. The Levitation Hex was rised from the ashes of the band Alchemist by yourself, do you think there are still some links with the past in your music?
Adam Agius: I would say yes there is especially on the first album but less so on Cohesion. When I play slide guitar it is usually reminiscent of Alchemist for people. Also my voice is reminiscent of Alchemist. The new album has a sound of its own for the most part.
Your first album was already a work out of the main stream metal sound, we can say your second album “Cohesion” is another step in that direction?
AA: I have heard people say that. To us Cohesion is a far similar approach and to be honest I don’t even know what main stream metal is. I write music to please myself and bandmates and we do not consider popularity or trends when writing music. If it is outside the mainstream I guess I like that because it shows originality and a rebellious nature. The metal scene is very unadventurous and it seems people want to follow style like religion….Not me.
“Cohesion” includes mellotron and organ parts, but no synthesizers at all, curious at least, isn’t it?
AA: We like the sound of keyboards but made a conscious effort not to use any synthesizers on this album. The mellotron has a very eerie sound to it that suits the music I believe.
As we said in our review, when you listen to The Levitation Hex you know you are in front of a different band. That was your purpose, to do something different, atypical, or it flowed naturally with no previous intentions?
AA: We had no pre conceived intentions or format to write the music. If a piece of music was liked by all members than we used it. We are not intentionally making music for any reason other than to create something that we all like. As mentioned earlier we see music as an extension of ourselves, as art, as an expression and we are not interested in following rules when it comes to music.
That’s clear. One of the most amazing things in your music is the combination of some old rock style with stronger sounds from thrash and death metal
AA: Yes this is true and we are all 70s rock fans so I guess that is evident especially with the rock beats in the drumming. When I was a teenager I became interested in old school thrash and early death metal and I think that you can hear some of that also. We consider ourselves a Rock/Metal band and I think you will hear more Rock influence the longer we are a band.
It sounds good to me. How long did you need to finish up this “Cohesion”?
AA: It took us two years to complete and then we had almost a year to wait to finish mixing and recording due to budget restraints and not being able to book the studio when we needed it.
You also touch some progressive edge in songs as The Things Time Can’t Mend, well, this if we don’t consider your whole album as a progressive fact
AA: I agree there are progressive elements and also rock elements, psychedelic elements and metal elements but it is not just one style like progressive metal.
When one thought there would be no more surprises you got Buried in a World, an epic song a la Atlantean Kodex with really creative guitars
AA: I have no idea who Atlantean Kodex are but I will surely check them out now. Buried in a world has a real swing feel to it that I really like , It is a song built around Scott Youngs hypnotic guitar riff.
Which song was more difficult to compose and conclude?
AA: Energy refund stands out in my memory as a song that was difficult to complete, the first part is in 6/4 and the second part is in 4/4, I experimented with several endings before I decided on the current one.
Well, it’s also a chance to remix with different endings then fo future releases. In your opinion what is the most important element in a composition: the freshness and creativity or a catchy/powerful rhythm?
AA: I think both are very important elements but as a music fan I think that a catchy rhythm is the most important factor.
What are the lyrics about?
AA: The lyrics are of a positive nature and questions things like Human existence, Spirituality (not religion!!!) psychic abilities and the unknown. We try to keep the lyrics either positive or of a questioning nature as I feel that negativity is too dominant in heavy music and after 40 years of it I am very bored with the whole dark side /war thing.
You have released your album with High Roller Records, another clue of the quality of this album. How do you feel with the guys?
AA: High roller have been very supportive despite the fact that we are difficult to sell and difficult to market. We are an adventurous rock band and that makes us difficult to pigeon hole and that’s great for the band but creates problems for record labels trying to sell albums to a specific demographic.
An exercise of imagination, if you were back in the 70s what music you would play? You would be a former Black Sabbath, Judas Priest or...?
AA: I would either be in Black Sabbath, Pink Floyd, Led Zeppelin, or some crazy prog band like Can or Faust. Or maybe Lucifers friend.
It fits. From your tower, as an eclectic band, what do you think of Metal nowadays?
AA: to be perfectly honest it does not interest me in the slightest it’s all either way to technical, lacks soul/spirit or is a complete rip off of a previous band or popular bands style. I like only a handful of modern bands. I like Opeth, they are not afraid to try new ideas and that makes me interested.
I praise your sincerity, Adam. What touring plans do you have?
AA: we will tour Australia, NZ and south East Asia in 2016 and then Europe and Australia in 2017.
Adam, thank you very much for the conversation, it was a pleasure
Thank you very much for your time, please direct listeners to our website to hear some free music. www.levitationhex.net